The Perfect Gin & Tonic

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Over the years I have consumed my fair share of Gins & Tonic (I maintain that the pleural of “Gin & Tonic” is “Gins and Tonic” due to the fact that the gin is the most exciting component). Some have been fabulously refreshing, crisp and full of the very fragrance of summer itself, whilst others have been thoroughly forgettable.

How can this be? It can’t be that difficult to put together a G&T can it? It only has two ingredients – Gin and Tonic. There may only be two main ingredients but in my mind that makes it even more important to make sure that they are of great quality.

Michael Gove was once quoted as saying that “Since tonic is at least half, if not two-thirds, of a gin and tonic, make sure you choose the right tonic” and I wholeheartedly encourage this thinking. Forget that Slimline tonic nonsense, it tastes awful, get hold of some decent high octane tonic and keep it in the fridge so that it is chilled. Match this with your favourite gin and a little analytical thinking in the way we build the gin and tonic and we can create something really worth drinking.

What you will need:

  • Ice
  • Gin                 (I use many brands but today Bombay Sapphire)
  • Tonic              (Fevertree is a good choice)
  • Lime
  • Sharp Knife
  • Glass              (I favour a large tumbler over a highball, but it is your G&T so choose your favourite glass)
  1. First roll the whole lime with your hand on a chopping board. This helps to release the juice and slightly warms the skin allowing the essential oils to be released.
  2. Chop the lime in half (across it’s equator rather than longitudinally) then cut each half in half again then each remaining segment in half again (lengthwise) to create wedges.
  3. Squeeze one of the wedges in to your glass and throw the wedge in to the bottom of the glass. You hear of people rubbing the rim with the lime, I don’t advocate this as it makes the outside of the glass sticky as lime juice dribbles down the outside.
  4. Then fill the glass up with plenty of ice (we do this before adding the gin as that way the gin will cool as it is poured over the ice
  5. Add a double (50ml) measure of your favourite gin (I’m using Bombay Saphire today, but choose your favourite)
  6. Top up with your tonic (I always use individual bottles of tonic as that way it will be as fresh as possible and none is wasted). I find that about 100ml is right for a double gin. If there is any room left in the glass top up with more ice. If you feel the need add another lime wedge (this time unsqueezed) in the top to help the citrus aroma.

Enjoy your Gin & Tonic.