Several years ago, I got together with a few other food bloggers for lunch at a terrific diner in San Francisco. Lunch was fabulous, truly. One menu item that struck my fancy was homemade ginger ale, which they made fresh to order.
After lunch, on my way out the door, I stopped the waitress to ask how they made it. She gave me a general idea, which I have attempted to recreate in the steps shown here.
The diner version included a little touch of ground clove and cardamom if I recall correctly. I didn't add those spices, without them the ginger ale still turned out just great!
It's quite easy to make. You may need to adjust the proportions depending on how intense or sweet you want your drink.
Homemade Ginger Ale
- Ginger water
- 1 cup peeled, finely chopped ginger
- 2 cups water
- Simple Syrup
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- Club soda
- Lime juice
- Lime wedges
Simmer ginger in water, strain:
Bring 2 cups of water to a boil in a saucepan. Add ginger. Reduce heat to medium low and let ginger sit in the simmering water for 5 minutes.
Remove from heat and let sit for 20 minutes. Strain liquid through a fine mesh strainer. Discard ginger pieces.
Make simple syrup:
In a separate saucepan, make the Simple Syrup by dissolving 1 cup granulated sugar into 1 cup of boiling water. Set aside.
Make individual (tall) glasses of ginger ale by mixing 1/2 cup of ginger water with 1/3 cup of Simple Syrup and 1/2 cup of club soda. Add a few drops of fresh lime juice and a lime wedge to each glass.