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The Gin & Tonic Project

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Gin & Tonic.  Such a simple drink, yet the variations in the manner of its preparation and service seem endless.  I am proposing a compendium of these variants to document its history and hopefully provide a guide for those who might be seeking a truly satisfying Gin & Tonic in an unsuspecting place.  Just the facts...  the good, the bad, and the ugly.  Does the tonic come out of the gun or a bottle?  What did it cost?  What is the rail gin?  Aristocrat (Spirits of 76) or Plymouth (Rare Tavern)?  There is a time and place for each.  My suggestion is that the list be limited to examples you actually drank, and not just plucked off a cocktail menu somewhere.

I'll kick it off with the GTF at Baba Cocktail Bar.  Cucumber infused gin (I believe this is done in-house, but honestly I did not see where it came from).  Fever Tree elderflower tonic.  Rose water.  Edible flower petals.  Citrus essence.  Lime.  Glass poured with half of the tonic and you are given the rest of the Fever Tree bottle to mix to your taste.  $11.  A strong offering.

NCH2955.jpg

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That is a great looking drink!!!  Perfect for this weather!!   Lucky me. I'm pretty close, I'll waddle over and try one!!.  Thanks.

I'm not a connoisseur of G&T's.  I drink and like them, especially during warm months.  I've never spent long periods questing after the ever best G&T.  Regardless a few years ago at Corduroy I had a G&T with Bar Hill Gin .   Its a honey infused gin.  I loved it.  I have Bar Hill at home and mix it with various bottled tonics and a lime.  I'm not that particular on the tonics.  I love the gin.

Just checked.  Corduroy evidently no longer carries Bar HIll (its not on the Bar Hill website) but other local bars and restaurants do and you can purchase Bar Hill at various liquor stores in the area.

Caveat:  While I love it, some G&T "experts" pass on it.  The honey infused gin is not to everyone's taste.  (btw:  I have N.E.V.E.R made a G&T as pretty as the one in that photo!!  I'm thirsty right now!!!)

 

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In the same vein as DaveO's response, I thought G&T fans would at least enjoy trying the variant at Rasa if they're in the neighborhood.

The tonic is infused with Indian spices (not sure of the exact blend) and mixed with Green Hat gin.  I've had a couple and enjoyed them.

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LoveCraft Cocktails (Our home bar ) a G&T is either "Star's" Uncle Val's Botanical Gin or "Pooch's" The Botanist either with Fever Tree Tonic and a small wedge of lime. 

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As discussed elsewhere, Del Mar has a few interesting gin and tonics mixed with Tanqueray N.10 and Fever Tree tonic water for $14 (plus one for $35 that serves two):

BAILANDO ~ Juniper Berries & Cucumber

DIA LIBRE ~ Earl Grey, Rosemary, Lemon

TE QUIERO ~ Lemongrass, Rosemary, Grapefruit, Homemade Tonic

HABLE DE TI ~ Gin Mare, House-Made Tonic, Lime, Cava, Brine Foam, Bay Leaf $35 (serves two)

I rarely order a gin and tonic in a restaurant (I enjoy them more or less but don't get too excited about them in general), but I was intrigued enough to order the Te Quiero a few months ago and enjoyed it.

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3 hours ago, dracisk said:

As discussed elsewhere, Del Mar has a few interesting gin and tonics mixed with Tanqueray N.10 and Fever Tree tonic water for $14 (plus one for $35 that serves two):

BAILANDO ~ Juniper Berries & Cucumber

DIA LIBRE ~ Earl Grey, Rosemary, Lemon

TE QUIERO ~ Lemongrass, Rosemary, Grapefruit, Homemade Tonic

HABLE DE TI ~ Gin Mare, House-Made Tonic, Lime, Cava, Brine Foam, Bay Leaf $35 (serves two)

I rarely order a gin and tonic in a restaurant (I enjoy them more or less but don't get too excited about them in general), but I was intrigued enough to order the Te Quiero a few months ago and enjoyed it.

Just to put this in price perspective.  Bar Hill is a little less expensive than Tanqueray #10.  With a standard size bottle of fever tree from Costco or Target and a healthy 1.5 oz pour of gin your cost at home is about $2.60 - $2.80.  No tax or tip.  (doesn’t include the cost of infusing the gin with other ingredients) but does include a slice of lime, even an organic slice  😄

You are responsible for placing used glasses in the dishwasher.  

 

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42 minutes ago, DaveO said:

Just to put this in price perspective.  Bar Hill is a little less expensive than Tanqueray #10.  With a standard size bottle of fever tree from Costco or Target and a healthy 1.5 oz pour of gin your cost at home is about $2.60 - $2.80.  No tax or tip.  (doesn’t include the cost of infusing the gin with other ingredients)

You are responsible for placing used glasses in the dishwasher.

I'd say infusing the gin is a barrier for the average person (or maybe it's just me). I've been meaning to infuse tequila with charred jalapenos using my Porthole and just can't seem to get around to it. Also, as I recall, these were pretty generously sized (served in a goblet-type glass). Still, your point is very well taken!

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1 hour ago, dracisk said:

I'd say infusing the gin is a barrier for the average person (or maybe it's just me). I've been meaning to infuse tequila with charred jalapenos using my Porthole and just can't seem to get around to it. Also, as I recall, these were pretty generously sized (served in a goblet-type glass). Still, your point is very well taken!

...and I agree.  I did a little of this a while back to become knowledgeable about evolving trends and to learn about the processes.  Haven’t done it since as I’m not in that world.  I did it with some bartenders I know, some of whom are still practicing the art in town.  I’d call the practice a form of liquid cooking.  I suspect in each craft bar in town there are some practitioners.  

I only put the cost out there as a form of perspective.  

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Liberty Tavern - LT G&T.  Hendrick's gin.  Muddled cucumber.  Lime. Full bottle of Fever Tree tonic on the side to mix to taste.  $11.

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Fire Works - Court House, Arlington, VA.  Not Your Granny's  G&T, Because She Drank Straight Vodka.  Bombay Sapphire gin.   Cucumber.   Fever Tree tonic.  Chamomile tea and lemon infused ice cube,.  Lime.  $10.  That's  a bargain.

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29 minutes ago, dcs said:

Fire Works - Court House, Arlington, VA.  Not Your Granny's  G&T, Because She Drank Straight Vodka.  Bombay Sapphire gin.   Cucumber.   Fever Tree tonic.  Chamomile tea and lemon infused ice cube,.  Lime.  $10.  That's  a bargain.

Which have you liked  best so far?   

Keep up the productive science!! 🤩

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On 7/5/2018 at 10:42 AM, DaveO said:

Regardless a few years ago at Corduroy I had a G&T with Bar Hill Gin .   Its a honey infused gin.  I loved it.  I have Bar Hill at home and mix it with various bottled tonics and a lime.  I'm not that particular on the tonics.  I love the gin.

I really like Bar Hill, too. For my Bar Hill G&T, I prefer a wedge of grapefruit, rather than the traditional lime.

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On 7/8/2018 at 7:16 PM, dcs said:

Fire Works - Court House, Arlington, VA.  Not Your Granny's  G&T, Because She Drank Straight Vodka.  Bombay Sapphire gin.   Cucumber.   Fever Tree tonic.  Chamomile tea and lemon infused ice cube,.  Lime.  $10.  That's  a bargain.

At Fireworks now to try the Not Your Grannies G&T and watch the game between Croatia and England.  Kill 2 birds with one stone.  To report back later.

BTW:  Science is a demanding master.  I virtually never drink during the day

Ooooh  bend it like Beckham

 

BOOM BAH   The surprise equalizer!!!!!!

 

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On 7/8/2018 at 7:16 PM, dcs said:

Fire Works - Court House, Arlington, VA.  Not Your Granny's  G&T, Because She Drank Straight Vodka.  Bombay Sapphire gin.   Cucumber.   Fever Tree tonic.  Chamomile tea and lemon infused ice cube,.  Lime.  $10.  That's  a bargain.

In lieu of rating this G&T I need to focus on how I like them and where and when I’ve enjoyed drinking G&T’s as these preferences color my perspective.

I love them in hot weather.  For hot weather my preference is cold beer or a G&T.  Great by a pool, the ocean, a lake picnics and summer barbecues.  Gin plus tonic with lots of ice and citrus is nice against a blazing sun.

I like a LOT OF TONIC!!!!  At a home I tend to have the large 2 liter bottles of tonic.  They are about 68 ounces of liquid which is 10 times those little fever tree bottles.  My home made G&T’s use much more tonic than what is in one of those bottles. 

That killed it for me....but that is me.  The other Arlington specialty G&T’s would also not suffice if the mixer is a  small bottle of fever tree.  I much prefer a better gin with a lot of tonic from a soda gun and  lots of ice plus citrus—lots of citrus in lime lemon or as mentioned above grapefruit.  They all work.

The Fireworks pour was strong either 1 and 3/4 ounce or 2.  If you like it boozy go to Fireworks.

The single ice cube with lemon and infused tea did nothing for me.  Seemed like a “circus trick”. 

At $10 that seems like a good price in today’s specialty cocktail world and it is boozy.  If I were younger I’d drink a lot at Fireworks.  I like those healthy pours

In terms of the gin—that is your preference.   Lot of neat gins out there.

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10 minutes ago, DaveO said:

The single ice cube with lemon and infused tea did nothing for me.  Seemed like a “circus trick”. 

It's not a bad drink, but you nailed the ice cube.

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The Old Raj Gin & Orange Thyme Tonic at Estadio for $14 never fails to satisfy.  Old Raj gin.  Orange peel.  Fresh thyme.  House-made tonic.  One big-ass ice cube.

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On 7/5/2018 at 7:58 AM, dcs said:

Gin & Tonic.  Such a simple drink, yet the variations in the manner of its preparation and service seem endless.  I am proposing a compendium of these variants to document its history and hopefully provide a guide for those who might be seeking a truly satisfying Gin & Tonic in an unsuspecting place.  Just the facts...  the good, the bad, and the ugly.  Does the tonic come out of the gun or a bottle?  What did it cost?  What is the rail gin?  Aristocrat (Spirits of 76) or Plymouth (Rare Tavern)?  There is a time and place for each.  My suggestion is that the list be limited to examples you actually drank, and not just plucked off a cocktail menu somewhere.

I'll kick it off with the GTF at Baba Cocktail Bar.  Cucumber infused gin (I believe this is done in-house, but honestly I did not see where it came from).  Fever Tree elderflower tonic.  Rose water.  Edible flower petals.  Citrus essence.  Lime.  Glass poured with half of the tonic and you are given the rest of the Fever Tree bottle to mix to your taste.  $11.  A strong offering.

NCH2955.jpg

This is similar to what we experienced in Scotland and later London. Same glass, but regular Fever Tree tonic water (always on the side). Lots of ice, the measured pour and that was it.

We were kind of disappointed in most cocktails we ordered in the UK. I am told because...they had no Prohibition?

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On 7/12/2018 at 5:46 AM, dcs said:

The Old Raj Gin & Orange Thyme Tonic at Estadio for $14 never fails to satisfy.  Old Raj gin.  Orange peel.  Fresh thyme.  House-made tonic.  One big-ass ice cube.

The G&T variants at Estadio have always been interesting and, more importantly, really good.  I don't think I've ever been in there and not at least started off with one, even when the weather outside is decidedly not G&T-friendly.

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On 7/12/2018 at 5:46 AM, dcs said:

The Old Raj Gin & Orange Thyme Tonic at Estadio for $14 never fails to satisfy.  Old Raj gin.  Orange peel.  Fresh thyme.  House-made tonic.  One big-ass ice cube.

 

3 hours ago, TedE said:

The G&T variants at Estadio have always been interesting and, more importantly, really good.  I don't think I've ever been in there and not at least started off with one, even when the weather outside is decidedly not G&T-friendly.

Old Raj is a tasty inspired gin--and mucho strong.   If only I were younger and could handle drinking more than once or twice(now pushing it) per week.  I hope others join in with tasty alternatives.

Dammit...I haven't been to Estadio often and in thinking back I believe I was always there during cooler weather.   Missed all those G&T's.

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