The term gimlet eye has an interesting origin, though it has nothing to do with the gimlet cocktail. We will examine the definition of the terms gimlet eye and gimlet cocktail, where they came from and some examples of their use in sentences.
To have a gimlet eye or to cast a gimlet eye means to stare at someone or something in a piercing manner, or to stare in an extremely watchful manner. The term gimlet eye is derived from the gimlet, a small piercing or boring tool first used in the mid-1300s. The term gimlet eye came into use in the mid-1700s. The adjective form is gimlet-eyed. Note that the adjective is hyphenated, while the noun form, gimlet eye, is not hyphenated.
A gimlet cocktail is composed of gin and lime juice, with some variations. This concoction was invented in the latter 1800s by the British Naval Surgeon Rear-Admiral Sir Thomas Desmond Gimlette, as a method to combat scurvy.
There also needs to be a “come to Jesus moment,” she said, with looking at the instructor roster and compensation models with a gimlet eye. (The Roanoke Times)Under the gimlet eye of a rising half-moon, cowboys and cowgirls will gather ‘round the campfire to swap stories and sing songs and roast marshmallows at the Barracks this weekend. (The Sonoma Index-Tribune)Since her 2005 solo debut, this Swedish synth scientist has released razor-edged records that combine electro experimentation with gimlet-eyed observations. (Rolling Stone Magazine)A gimlet is like an old friend: always there when you need it, regardless of how much time has passed since you last called upon it. (The Tasting Table Magazine)