Tom Collins with Cranberry Cocktail (Bloody Tom Collins)

The Cranberry Collins is a fall cocktail based on the Classic Tom Collins. The perfect Thanksgiving Cocktail.

Who Is Tom Collins?

Dude! Have you heard of this fucker Tom Collins? He’s been talking shit about you. You seriously need to do something about this. I think I just saw that prick go in to that bar over there!

Seriously, that was the essence of a bar prank that circled around the urban New York City bar scene in the late 1800s. The idea was to mess with someone, who was probably already drunk, and get them into a fury about how they were personally insulted by Tom Collins. The victim of the prank would then storm into the bar and shout “Have you seen Tom Collins” in a rage and his buddies would laugh as he tried to find Tom Collins to kick his ass.

According to lore, one unnamed, enterprising bartender took advantage of this old time meme and created a drink called the Tom Collins. So, when some drunken pugilist burst into his bar and yelled, “Where there fuck is Tom Collins!?!” the barkeep could say, “Right here!”.

What’s A Bloody Tom Collins?

This drink is a riff on that hilarious origin story. Imagine someone really opened a can of whoop ass on poor Tom Collins? Don’t you think he’d be pretty bloody? Cranberry simple syrup is used to sweeten the drink and creates a blood red cranberry cocktail that looks like it just went a round with “Raging” Jim O’Flannery (which is the name I imagine for a drunken New Yorker in 1874).

Not only is the result delicious, and honestly quite pretty, but the backstory is the perfect ice breaker at parties and fills those awkward silences at Thanksgiving.

How Do I Make A Bloody Tom Collins?

It’s actually fairly simple, all need is cranberry simple syrup. See what I did there?

Cranberry Simple SyrupThis Recipe Calls For Cranberry Simple Syrup. Find Out How To Make It Here


You also need London Dry Gin which, as the name suggests, is a drier spirit that balances well with the sweet, tart cranberry simple syrup. Brands to look for are: Beefeater, Tanqueray, and Bombay Sapphire.

Fill a cocktail shaker with ice and pour in the London Dry Gin, cranberry simple syrup, and some fresh lemon juice. Shake until it’s chilled. Strain the mixture into a high ball glass with ice and top with seltzer water. Garnish the drink with a lemon twist and drop some frozen cranberries on top. I love using frozen cranberries because they look so pretty and frosty as they thaw.

This recipe requires a little something special.  Here’s a list of what you will need:

Tom Collins with Cranberry Cocktail AKA Bloody Collins

The Cranberry Collins is a fall cocktail based on the Classic Tom Collins. The perfect Thanksgiving Cocktail.

Course Cocktails
Cuisine American
Keyword Cranberry Cocktails, Gin Cocktails, Thanksgiving Cocktails, Tom Collins
Cook Time 1 minute
Servings 1 Cocktail
Author Chris Cetta


  • 2 Ounces London Dry Gin
  • 1 Ounce Cranberry Simple Syrup
  • 3/4 Ounce Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice
  • Seltzer


  1. Shake gin, cranberry simple syrup, and lemon juice with ice until chilled, about 15 seconds. Strain into a highball glass filled 2/3 of the way with ice. Top with seltzer.

  2. Garnish with a lemon twist and top with frozen cranberries.

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