Not just a drink or the singular form of the popular alternative music band Gin Blossoms, a gin blossom is an easily spotted mark of a hard drinker, or at the least one who was fond of the bottle at some point in his or her life.
A gin blossom refers to the bright red nose of alcoholics, typically found in men in their fifties and above. For obvious reasons, it's called a gin blossom due to the alcoholic content of gin and because the brightness and size of the nose looks a bit like a flower blooming. But what makes a gin blossom?
Gin blossoms are a disease known as rosacea, and can be aggravated by a persistent level of alcohol in a persons blood stream. Too much alcohol can cause capillaries in the body to burst, and the nose, with its thin layer of skin and high number of close-together pores, is a tangled mess of really tiny capillaries. If just a few burst, you're fine. But if you're a really determined alcoholic, more than a few burst, and the nose can remain red for a very long time, being quite prominent depending on how much of a drinker one really is.
If you're still not sure what I'm talking about, think back to Grampa, and how he'd always ask you to hand him his "cough medicine." Remember his purplish-red nose and sickly-sweet breath? There's your gin blossom.
And since I was never one to stand in somebody's way when they're pursuing a dream, here's the recipe to make your very own gin blossom:
One glass, filled to the top with ice
1 oz. of gin
1.5 oz. peach Schnapps
Top off with Seven-Up or Sprite