Pamplemousse Vieux Mot, a mixture of gin, St. Germain, and citrus juice. Photo by Donna Turner Ruhlman.

Enamored of the elderflower liqueur, St. Germain, and looking for a cocktail that would give me an excuse to reach for its unique bottle, My Girl Friday and I both found this lovely new cocktail, a variation on the Vieux Mot, perfect for late winter when good grapefruits are still coming in. Citrusy and floral, a perfect libation and anticipation of spring, which can’t get here soon enough for me.

The Vieux Mot, French for old saying or wise old saying, combines gin, St. Germain, and lemon. This variation, the Pamplemousse Vieux Mot, adds grapefruit juice, thanks to a lovely blog we found, the Bojon Gourmet, by food stylist and photographer Alanna Taylor-Tobin, whose lovely photos feature her expertise in pastry (currently pain au chocolat, using rye flour for the laminated dough, inspired by the multi-talented chef and writer David Lebovitz).

New cocktail, new blog to read, and a new weekend ahead. For me, a busy weekend in Chicago, with the Good Food Festival, where Brian Polcyn and I will be demoing hog breakdown and curing methods tomorrow, a dash through the massive housewares show with my partner in tools, a stop by the PolyScience, maker of sous vide tools and other cool kitchen inventions, and a presentation at the IACP conference on the multi-platformed life. But this evening, at my hotel, I hope to be able to order this excellent libation to end my day of travel.

Hope you all have a splendid weekend. Salut!


Pamplemousse Vieux Mot

  • 2 ounces gin
  • 1 ounce St. Germain
  • 3 ounces fresh grapefruit juice
  • 1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 ounce simple syrup
  • Lemon slice, for garnish
  1. Combine the liquids in a lowball glass, add ice, and stir.
  2. Garnish with a lemon slice.


Other links you may like:

© 2014 Michael Ruhlman. Photo © 2014 Donna Turner Ruhlman. All rights reserved.


27 Wonderful responses to “Friday Cocktail Hour: Pamplemousse Vieux Mot”

  • Allen

    My Friday cocktail was a 2 liter jug of Golightly, prep for a procedure.
    Some tasty stuff – blech!

    I’ll make up for it, I just found a recipe for a white Negroni using a bitter wine called “Suze”.

  • Amanda

    It truly feels like the weekend once I’ve gotten my Friday Cocktail Hour fix! This weeks post is a favorite — my go-to drink is anything with gin, St. Germain and a little citrus. It feels like a celebratory day in Cleveland too, after out wrangling this week’s weather – so I might top this off with a bit of bubbly.

  • Tags

    You might want to try pairing St Germain with pineapple juice. That sounds like it should work. As for me, I’m still waiting for the Great Lakes Chillwave (nee Alchemy Hour) double IPA to make it to Pennsylvania. Shouldn’t be long now if you Clevelanders haven’t sucked it all up already.

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  • Darcie

    My new favorite obsession is a half & half mix of pineapple and grapefruit juice in cocktails. Cuts down on the cloying tendency of pineapple but still sweet. I could drink it straight (but luckily I have rum!)


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  • Tony

    I honestly thought I invented this cocktail a couple years ago in Naples, FL when we couldn’t resist the extremely fresh grapefruits at the market. So funny to see it here! I called it the “Naples Breeze”. I went with all grapefruit juice, no lemon and served it up in a cocktail glass.

    …and one correction Ruhlman….St Germain is elderFLOWER liquor, not elderBERRY liquor


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  • Alanna

    Hi Michael, I’ve been an admirer of your writing for a long time, and am so honored to see a cocktail from my site posted on yours. Thank you for giving it a go, and for the kind words about my site! The lighting and styling in Donna’s photo are just lovely. Thank you again, and I hope you had a lovely weekend filled with good food and drink. Cheers.


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  • May

    Whoops – looks like you’re getting a lot of spam-type messages in the new format, Michael – how annoying.

    We’re big fans of St Germain, too – it’s so reminiscent of summer days. Rather good with prosecco, too, for a very simple aperitif.

  • Lorna Helick

    Hi Mr. Ruhlman, I love this cocktail, but I prefer vodka over gin, any thoughts on using vodka in this recipe?

  • Tari

    I came on to your site to look at the Duck Confit, then ran across this. Remarkably, I tried St Germain for the first time yesterday, and, of course, loved it. I’m a big fan of Grapefruit juice with Gin, so this recipe is next on my list. A taste of summer!

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    I have seen this recipe also with a slapped basil leaf as a garnish. Makes for a nice finishing touch.

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