The Boxer has been fighting its way to the top of the craft gin market since 2014 with a secret weapon. This not-so-classic dry gin gets its vibrant and complex taste from the marriage of Himalayan and Bulgarian juniper, lots of carefully sourced botanicals, and British wheat.
If 3/4 of your G&T is tonic, you’d better make sure it is good tonic. And if 60% of your gin is water, you’d better get the purest there is. Martin Miller travels all the way to Iceland to get his. Could this be why this gin won more top medals than any other in the past 10 years? Nah, there’s more to it…
Tonic water, made with bitter quinine mixed with sugar and lemon, was used in India by the British army to ward off Malaria – often helped down with a ration of gin. Years later is it now the quintessential mixer for Gin. Peter Spanton Beverages has looked back to redefine modern tonic water.
Our second “ILoveGin club” monthly G&T box will feature two of the Peter Spanton range: Their Classic No.1 Tonic Water, and their No.9 Cardamom Tonic Water.
In their signature classic No 1. London Tonic, the strong taste of quinine is balanced with Sicilian lemon oil and the essence of bitter orange peel. It is sweetened with Sucralose which is 600 times sweeter than sugar so only a very small amount is needed to produce a perfect tonic of under 4 calories.
Christian Jensen, a banking IT specialist, was working in Tokyo and came across a hidden bar serving a “Naked Martini” – just London Dry gin and a twist of lime. Jensen enjoyed the drink so much he regularly returned to the bar during his stay, and on his last visit before returning to London he was presented with a bottle of the gin by the owner. This gin was no longer in production, and the brand on the label was illegible. Jensen made it his personal mission to find or recreate his new favourite spirit when he was back in London.
What is Gin?
For a spirit to be called a “Gin”, Juniper must be the predominant flavour, but a huge array of botanicals are used to give the many different brands of gin their distinct flavours.
Gin as we know it today stems from “Jenever”, a Dutch spirit made with Juniper berries and usually aged in casks. Originally it was used as a medicinal tonic, but developed over time into a recreational drink, and exploded as an industry when it was brought to Britain by the Dutch in the 17th century.
There are various types of gin and it’s the London dry we are focusing on…
Here’s 5 recipes that will get you drinking/eating gin and tonic like never before…
Gin and Tonic Popsicles
Ice lollies for adults. Forget gin on rocks with slice of cucumber, lick it off the stick and you won’t even notice you got yourself drunk.
These are so great for a sunny summers day and not hard to make. Why not make a batch now so they are ready for when the sun comes out.
- 350g fresh white currants
- ½ cup sugar
- Juice of half a lemon
- 1 cup gin
- ½l water
- 1 sliced lemon
- 1 sliced cucumber
Simmer the the white currants and sugar with about ½ a cup of water for 8-10 mins. Leave to cool. Strain, and push pulp through sieve to remove seeds. Add the lemon juice, gin and water. Pour into the popsicle mould (if you don’t have one then plastic champagne glasses work well – probably about 7-8) insert cucumber or lemon slices and freeze for at least 5 hours.
There are SO many gins out there that it can sometimes be overwhelming when you stand at the bar and order a G&T and the barman turns and asks you what gin you’d like…he points at a whole back bar stacked full of GIN! This shouldn’t be a mad moment of panic where you feel so under pressure that you end up going for the closest bottle or the one you vaguely recognise or stands out on the shelf! This should be your time to shine and impress Mr Bartender with your Gin knowledge…so let’s start with some top British Gins.