I like gin and have 8 different types in the house (yes I will confess that this is excessive, but it just sort of happened..). I thought about a gin martini but decided instead to celebrate the Gin and Tonic. Which is such a lovely drink and much maligned…
Gin in it’s original form was intended to be medicinal and claimed to treat kidney ailments, lumbago, stomach ailments, gallstones, and gout. Later in the days of the Raj, tonic (basically water with quinine) was used to treat malaria and because it tasted so bitters, doctors took to putting a slug of gin in it to help it go down and the G&T was born..
Gin and Tonic was the first grown up drink I remember drinking, growing up it was a drink for special occasions, we only really had booze in the house at Christmas (in the 70’s and 80’s, grown ups went to the pub to drink except at Christmas or if they were having a party, we didn’t drink at home). On Christmas Day, Ben and I were given miniature G&T’s that were more (much more) tonic than gin, but had the ice and lemon in. Very grown up we felt too..I love it despite the issue I have with quinine being one of the things that make me sneeze (along with chocolate with a high cocoa content and polos, I don’t know why but I can live with it..)
My G&T’s are generally made with Miller’s or Plymouth (other gins are available but not ever Bombay Saphire – not in my house!!), generally I use Schweppes, although Fever Tree is nice. Nowadays, I use lime instead of lemon and with a gin like Hendricks, cucumber. The real trick, as with cocktails is to have everything really cold, I keep my gin in the freezer. You don’t have to take such extreme measures but use lots of ice and fresh tonic, if you have neither, don’t bother, so many people are put off gin because their first experience of it is a lacklustre G&T…
1. Fill a tall glass with ice, pour in the amount of gin you want (I like to taste the gin, others are more restrained!)
2. Squeeze a wedge of lime into the glass and top up with tonic and other wedge of lime.
3. Drink, enjoy, don’t have too many..