We talked to the Cocktail Manager at the Gin Festival to let us know the secrets to preparing a gin tonic.
From bitter medicine to becoming one of the most popular drinkers in the world, gin and tonic has made its way. The story of this drink originated in British colonies and more precisely in the Indian subcontinent. Here in the second half of 1800 one of the greatest health threats was malaria, a disease that was fought with tonic water – that is, a quinine-prepared drink, an antimalarial extract from the bark of the china tree. But the sensible British palate did not like his excessively bitter taste. So settlers began to add to their tonic water one of their favorite distillates: gin.
Over the centuries, gin and tonic has reached virtually all corners of the world and has evolved and has changed shape. A change occurred on the one hand thanks to the courage of large and small (sometimes micro) distilleries, which without forgetting the juniper have experienced the use of new botanicals. From the standpoint of the mixologists who wanted to go beyond the borders of the always great, but not necessarily exciting, lemon slice.
The latest news comes from Spain. Here in recent years they have taken the most classic of British drinks and have revolutionized it both in the approach and in the flavor. Ordinary glass is the balloon piece, that is, a cup similar to wine. But the novelty is what is served in, that is, gin tonic where experimentation makes it a master with the addition of fruits, spices, bitters and even jams. The purpose is simple: create a refreshing drink and exalt the characteristics of each gin.
A school of thought that has crossed the boundaries of the Iberian peninsula and has even conquered Great Britain. Just think that GinFestival.com, an itinerant festival that is among the biggest gin-devoted British events, has embraced this philosophy. “The large cup of glass allows you to add a large amount of ice, while the tall stem helps keep the heat away from the drink, ensuring that you stay cooler longer,” explains GQ Peter Barrett, Cocktail Manager and Events Assistant at the Gin Festival. “Additionally,” he adds, “when the seal is added it allows for a visually appealing drink.”
To choose the right seal, he explains, one has to start from the main genome of gin and the set of botanicals used to create it. Most brands recommend the best way to serve their product and indicate what is best to put into their gin. But often the best thing is to play with the aromas and choose your own garnish. “First he tastes gin and tonic and tries to identify the words that best describe their character,” continues Barrett. “Is it lively and with the distinctive notes of lemon, delicate and floral, or has hectic and dry notes? Once you understand this you can use garnishes to enhance an aroma or add a contrast note to gin. ”
For gin citric try with coriander, basil or thyme. For those more floral lavender or cucumber. If grassy notes stand out, use rosemary or apple, while they dominate the spices spilled on orange, cloves or pepper. Finally if the gin is particularly dry it opts for pink grapefruit or lime.
From the theory to practice, the good news is that preparing a perfect gin tonic is simple. And the few ingredients it needs make it easy to serve both home and out (a few things try to sip a gin tonic during a boat trip).
The rules to follow according to Peter Barrett are not so many, but sacred. First, use a glass with a stem. Then do not skimp on the ice and put it a lot. Then add one or two shots of your favorite gin and gasket. Finally, complete with ⅔ or ¾ of a toner bottle of the best quality.
“Today there are so many versatile and interesting ginos with an infinite variety of aromas and styles, which means that there is really a real gin out there for anyone,” says Barrett.
“There are also many high quality toner brands available to accompany these gin, which means there is still plenty to explore and you can discover ever-changing new flavor combinations. The choice you have today with G & T, “concludes,” is infinite. “