Synonymous with gin, tonic water is as British as the Queen’s Corgies and cucumber sandwiches. But it was, in fact, in India that this quintessentially British tipple originated.
Troops stationed in British Colonial India were prescribed tonic water, which was capable of warding off malaria. To make their daily ‘Indian tonic water’ prescription more palatable and enjoyable, the ever-resourceful troops added a hit of gin. The resulting daily ritual eventually made its way back to Britain and cemented itself as the go-to drink for each and every class.
The primary ingredient in Indian tonic water is quinine. Sourced mainly from tropical regions, it now appears in much lesser quantities than when originally prescribed for medicinal purposes. It adds a uniquely bitter taste, which is balanced perfectly by citrus in your gin and tonic.
While gin is the perfect stable mate for tonic, it’s not the only spirit that loves tonic. Campari is a particular favourite for those that like a double shot of bitterness, while cognac and rum both pair incredibly well.
If you’ve always been wary of the bitterness of the drink, it might be time to revisit. Making the perfect gin and tonic might just get you back on track. Follow the directions below for G&T perfection.
Into a tall glass, add:
1 squeeze of lemon or Lime
Now, fill the glass entirely with ice, top with Schweppes Indian Tonic Water and garnish with a lemon or lime wedge.