The Bikan Yuso in Merchant’s Heart Tonic
A sense of beauty and playful imagination or – as the Japanese would call it – “Bikan Yuso”, is the secret ingredient that makes Merchant’s Heart sprit enhancers outstanding. They are the product of scientific research and master mixology – every flavour in the collection is designed to perfectly complement a particular spirit, and elevate drinking and drink-making to a whole new level of enjoyment.
It all started in 1899 when Suntory founder Shinjiro Torii started working towards fulfilling his vision – bringing the joyful western drinking experience to his native country, Japan. His ambition led him to become the chief of a world renowned drinks brand and his secret for success stood in his humble ethos:
“We may have grown from shop to company, but we must always be a tradesman; we must never forget our merchant’s heart”
It is following Torii’s mantra that Merchant’s Heart was founded in 2015. The aim is to provide the perfect match for a spirit by combining science and the knowledge of those who know consumers and spirits better than anyone else, the bartenders.
World-class drink-makers from the UK’s best bars were and still are invited to help devise the ultimate spirit enhancers: the mixers they dreamed of adding to the best spirits in their collections.
The perfect flavours are enhanced by the work of scientists in Spain who examine the effects of carbonation, garnishes and ice cubes on the drinking experience.
The Science in Merchant’s Heart Fizz
The bubbles in a mixer are what carry the flavour to the nose and allow us to identify all the bold flavours in the serve. Merchant’s Heart liquids are carbonated to a high level at the bottling stage for a long lasting fizz to let us enjoy our G&T till the last sip.
Making a G&T is easy but – to make a good G&T – skill, taste and research are essential. Experts, mixologists and gin and tonic brands all have different views on how to best enhance and complement the flavour to the spirit. Merchant’s Heart recommends:
- Choose the perfect spirit match for the tonic you’d like to use.
- Pick the right glass, it needs to be large enough to hold a lot of ice cubes – a copa glass is perfect.
- Chill the glass in the fridge. While you wait infuse the spirit with the dry garnish such as cardamon or dry lemon peel.
- Fill the chilled glass with lots of ice cubes and pour the gin over them.
- Top with the spirit enhancer pouring it against the side of the glass (1/3 ratio).
- Add the fresh garnish and give it a gentle GENTLE stir.
- Serve with Bikan Yuso!
Merchant’s Heart tonics come in 7 bold but not overpowering flavours, we particularly like the Pink Pepper, and Hibiscus Tonics (so we included them in a membes box!), but they are all unique and delicious!
Rich bitterness of quinine flows into the soft fruity spice of pink peppercorn. Excellent with aromatic spicy gin, earthy vodka, and Cognac.
Delicate and fruity sweetness with a soft bitterness and a gentle rose tint. Excellent with citrus gin, vermouth and white rum.
Fancy trying a Merchant’s Heart G&T? Sign up to the ILoveGin club now and get 4 G&Ts delivered to your door!