Australians are drinking less. The downward trend has been apparent over the last decade, but interest in drinking better has taken off. If you’re a regular reader of explore DRINKS, then you are most likely a part of this very movement; keen to learn more about the quality drinks on offer, the stories behind these beverages and the people that make them.
It definitely will not be news to you, then, that gin is the hottest spirit in Australia right now. In the six months leading to up to August 2018, exports of British gin to our southern land almost doubled, while new Australian gin distilleries are seemingly popping up every day. Where there’s gin flying off the shelves, tonic is not far after it.
If it’s a simple mixed drink you’re after, you want a tonic that brings out the best in the premium gin you’ve spent your hard-earned cash on. The most important rule is to pair it with a mixer that’s not going to unbalance or dominate your carefully crafted pour with a sugary or cloying sweetness. The carbonation is important too. Overly gassy waters and tonics can dominate the drink, while equally well balanced bubbles carry the natural flavours to the palate.
The mixer will typically make up 3⁄4 of your drink, so we suggest you choose wisely. Fortunately, there are a number of options out there for
the avid mixer, and we are light years ahead of what was on offer 10 years ago. 200ml bottles of premium mixers now feature in most bottle shop fridges, offering you a range of options in tonics, soda waters, ginger beer and lemonades.
Fever-Tree is a brand that pioneered the movement towards premium mixers here in Australia, and is well-established on shelves and behind bars around the country. Their use of quality ingredients has set Fever-Tree as the benchmark for others to follow. The quinine, used in the tonic waters and bitter lemon, comes from the original Cinchona trees (colloquially known as ‘fever trees’) from the last remaining plantation in war-torn Congo. Lemon thyme and rosemary from Provence are infused with lemons from Sicily to make their Mediterranean Tonic Water, created to complement light gins. Natural sugars such as cane sugar and fruit sugar have replaced sweeteners and HFCS to create drinks that will complement and enhance premium spirits.
This International Gin & Tonic Day (Friday 19th October) why not try one of these premium Fever-Tree tonics? After all, if 3⁄4 of your drink is a mixer, make sure you use the best!
PREMIUM INDIAN TONIC WATER:
A blend of subtle botanical flavours, such as hand-pressed bitter orange oil from Tanzania, mixed with spring water and the highest quality quinine. Try it out in a classic G&T and see if you notice the difference.
MEDITERRANEAN TONIC WATER:
Made by blending essential oils from flowers, fruits and herbs, to create a delicate and floral tonic. Perfect with a light gin, it
can also be enjoyed as a sophisticated ‘adult’ soft drink.
A blend of South American angostura bark and aromatic botanicals, such as cardamom, pimento berry and ginger. This tonic pairs well with juniper-rich, robust gins and is best served in a Pink G&T.
The light and sweet flavour of elderflower is balanced by the gentle bitterness of quinine. This soft and subtle tonic works well as a refreshing twist to the classic G&T.
NATURALLY LIGHT TONIC:
The world’s first all-natural, lower calorie tonic water. Despite having 58% less calories, this tonic is still distinctly tasty and crisp, as natural fruit sugars and quinine are perfectly balanced with citrus, aromatic botanicals and soft spring water.
SICILIAN LEMON TONIC:
This bitter lemon tonic is a combination of high quality Sicilian lemon oils and Fever-Tree’s signature quinine from the Congo. A wonderfully tart mixer.