MDI Biological Laboratory
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The Science of Cocktails: Elderflower Gin Fizz

  • May 6, 2022

Last month we shared with you the benefits of lemons and raspberries. This month, as we’ve enjoyed a few more hints of warm weather and the summer to come, we’ll be enjoying the wonderful elderflower (Sambucus nigra subspecies canadensis), a perennial native to Maine that can be found near roadsides and wet meadows.

This brilliant plant has been gracing food and drink for hundreds of years, and both its flowers and berries can be used for a variety of purposes. Elderflower blossoms, seen between now and July (and before elderberries grow), are aromatic and help build a floral yet balanced flavor profile. They’re also packed with antioxidants and vitamins (A, C, B6) that help boost your immune system, reduce inflammation and protect your heart. Anecdotally, elderflower, often in the form of tea, has been used to reduce the severity of symptoms and length of time of the common cold.

Elder also has diaphoretic properties – it brings blood to the surface of your body, causing sweat – as well as being astringent (causing the contraction of skin cells and other body tissues) with a slightly bitter taste.

If you’re out and about and want to look for Elderberry: their tell-tale flowers grow in beautiful, flat, star-like clusters which will peak in July, attracting  important pollinators.

Elderflower Gin Fizz

  • 2 oz gin (we recommend The Botanist)
  • ¾ oz fresh lemon juice
  • ½ oz simple syrup
  • ½ oz elderflower liqueur
  • sparkling mineral water


Elderflower Gin Fizz Cocktail
Add the gin, lemon juice, simple syrup and elderflower liqueur into a a glass, over ice.
Top with mineral water to your taste.