When setting out to do this week’s Friday Cocktail I knew that it would be quite familiar to most, if not everyone. That being said, there are bad gin and tonics and good ones, and I hope to set you on the right path to a good one.
As you may have guessed from yesterday’s post things in my new home are busy, but not in a way I find particularly bad. It’ exciting to explore around London, and to get to know our neighbourhood in between reading for classes. It was on a trip around the neighbourhood that Cameron and I stopped into one of the two wine/liquor stores nearest to us that will probably become our “regular” spot.
When we saw the bottle of Aviation gin we were intrigued. Not only was the idea of purchasing an American-distilled gin while living in London vaguely amusing, its description as “an adventurous blend of spices from around the world” was intriguing. Before making the actual cocktail I tried the tiniest sip to see what exactly those spices were. As it turns out they are a unique blend of juniper, cardamom, coriander, lavender, anise, sasparilla and orange peel; while you can definitely taste the cardamom (in fact it was the first thing I noticed) and juniper, the other spices and herbs definitely take a back seat. That being said, this is definitely not a classic gin, and there are plenty of people who probably would not like it at all, but I do, at least for a gin and tonic.
Anyway, the point of my long description is that the type of gin used in a gin and tonic is of vital importance to how the drink will turn out, as is the tonic you use. Fever Tree is fantastic, but you could use a few different kinds as long as you promise to never, ever, ever, use diet tonic water. The artificial sweetener mixed with the quinine is, in my opinion, a terrible combination.
The limes are the easy part as you don’t even need to juice them, so definitely go for the whole lime to cut into wedges.
• 1.5 oz of your favourite gin
• lime wedge
• tonic water
1. Pour gin into a cocktail glass with some ice
2. Squeeze lime wedge over the gin/ice (you could also do this last)
3. Top with tonic to taste, garnish with a lime wedge if desired, and enjoy!
If you don’t have a favourite gin, or don’t like gin at all (as I used to) I recommend doing a bit of research and finding a blend that is not quite so heavy on the juniper, or even infusing your own gin to control the spices used. It sounds difficult, but I promise it isn’t- I got Cameron a small kit last Christmas and it was incredibly simple, and had a really good result.