March 26, 2021

Ask A Mixologist: The “Everyone Brave Is Forgiven” Cocktail

Recipe: Marlene Thorne

Marlene Thorne of Toronto’s Famous Last Words shares the recipe for her cocktail, “Everyone Brave is Forgiven.”

Q: I had a delicious cocktail at Toronto bar Famous Last Words that I can’t stop thinking about. It was gin-based and had an Earl Grey flavor. Can you get the recipe for me? — Elaine, Etobicoke, Ontario.

A: Every single creation at Marlene’s cocktail bar is inspired by a book. This one is named after Everyone Brave is Forgiven by British author Chris Cleave. Earl Grey tea is infused into London Dry Gin — two fittingly English ingredients — and topped off with lavender for an aromatic finish. It’s now one of the bar’s most popular cocktails. “I suspect it’s because the tea adds complexity and, like the book, it’s perfectly bittersweet,” says Marlene.

Send your questions to [email protected].


  • 1 3⁄4 oz. Earl Grey–infused gin
  • 1⁄4 oz. Lillet Blanc
  • 3⁄4 oz. fresh lemon juice
  • 1⁄2 oz. Earl Grey syrup
  • 1–2 dashes lavender bitters
  • Dried lavender, for garnish


Yield: Makes 1 cocktail

Make Infused Gin

  1. Using 2 to 3 grams of loose tea for every 6 ounces of gin, steep tea in gin for 5 minutes, then strain. (Alcohol extracts flavor quite quickly, so be careful not to oversteep, or gin will get overly tannic and bitter.)

Make Earl Grey Syrup

  1. Brew strong earl grey tea (2 to 3 grams of loose tea per 6 ounces of water). Strain and, while it’s still warm, add equivalent gram measurement of sugar and stir. Refrigerate any leftovers.

Make Cocktail

  1. Add all ingredients (excluding garnish) to cocktail shaker; add generous amount of ice and shake vigorously for 20 to 30 seconds. Strain into chilled cocktail coupe and garnish with dried lavender flowers.