It's a perfect day for a Tom Collins.

Let me paint you a picture. A tall, frosted Collins glass graces your end table as you sit out on the wrought iron-fenced patio letting the warm March/April sun shine down and caress your winter skin. Fizzy bubbles spiral up to the surface of your glass, gently popping as they make contact with the air.

At first sip, you are greeted with the lightly sweet tang of lemon. As the effervescent spritz starts to relax, your mouth is filled with that gently juniper taste of your old friend gin. You finish with a lightly sighed "aahh" as you bring the glass back to its respective place next to you and gaze back out on the beautiful day.

Yes, the weather has been superb and yes, the Tom Collins is a particularly thirst-quenching drink, but neither of these is the reason for why you should stir one up in the upcoming week.

So why, if not for the weather, is this famed cocktail so specifically perfect for this week? Read on to find out!

Photo courtesy Clint Gardner via Flickr/CC
As cocktail history dictates, this gin-based sparkling lemonade comes from the Great Tom Collins hoax of 1874.

A mighty prank at that time, bar goers would tell unknowing friends of a "Tom Collins" who had been trashing their name as of recent. Pranksters would tell those unsuspecting buddies that Collins was just around the corner, encouraging them to fight their battle at the other bar. After angrily walking over, those pranked would come to see that there was no Tom Collins to be found. Why? Because Tom Collins simply didn't exist.

Once the prank grew more famed, bartenders began creating Tom Collins cocktails so that when a customer would come in asking for Tom Collins, they could serve them up a drink.

In honor of the great prank and just in time for joke-filled April Fool's Day, serve up a Tom Collins to one of your unsuspecting friends!

Tom Collins


2 parts gin
1 part freshly squeezed lemon juice
simple syrup
chilled soda water
orange wedge

Mix the gin, lemon juice and simple syrup in a Collins glass with ice, top with soda water, garnish and serve.