Open up any cocktail magazine and you'll see there's an old ingredient that's becoming new again: gomme syrup. Pronounced "gum" syrup, it's got a great history and even better results when mixed with booze.
Local company Eli Mason makes what they like to call "spirit forward" mixers. They launched with a killer Old Fashioned and followed it up with Mint Julep, but it's their Gomme Syrup that we are obsessed about.
Simple syrup is aptly named after the 1:1 ratio of sugar to water. "Rich" simple syrup amps up the sugar with a 2:1 ratio. When increasing the amount of sugar dissolved into a liquid, you always run the risk of the sugar crystalizing. Gomme syrup was created when gum arabic was added to a rich simple syrup to help emulsify the liquid and keep crystals from forming. The bonus of this addition is a syrup with a silky mouthfeel that helps cut the boozy edge from many classic cocktails. While most of these classic recipes have since been modernized to simply state "or use simple syrup," it's really not quite the same. Simple syrup simply will not provide the same rich mouthfeel you get from using a gomme syrup. It cuts the harsh edge of a spirit without compromising anything in the way of flavor.
Also known as acacia gum, gum arabic is a stabilizer that comes from the acacia tree. Hard to find and somewhat complicated to dissolve into liquid, we suggest forgoing tracking down your own gum arabic to make your own and letting the folks at Eli Mason do the work for you.
Now, off to make some cocktails!
Here are some that we've made using gomme syrup: