Tag Archives: gin and tonic

Gin and Tonic

juniper green gin and jack rudy tonic

“In addition to being a marvelous dancer, Jack Rudy loved to entertain and was known to overindulge in drink, smoke, and his wife’s gourmet cooking.”

My first cocktail order at a bar was a “vodka martini: shaken, not stirred,” which is pretty embarrassing in hindsight. I actually said “shaken not stirred.” Sigh. I can thank the Gin and Tonic for setting me on a course to enjoy more classically-styled cocktails, though, and I’ve found G&Ts to be a pretty accessible drink for most people.

As you may gather from my occasional ramblings here at Simple Cocktails, I like things a certain way: fresh, natural, and enjoyable. I think it adds to the pleasure of cocktails and make home parties better. I avoid high fructose corn syrup, which means that the grocery-store tonic water like Schweppes or Canada Dry never make an appearance in my home bar. Hansen’s Natural makes Tonic (Amazon link), which I’ve been stocking in my bar for several months, but it’s too sweet for my taste.

All of that considered, I recently made the best-tasting Gin and Tonic that I have tasted. Here’s the recipe:

 Gin and Tonic

  • in a 10 oz glass filled with ice, add:
  • 1 1/2 oz gin
  • 1/2 oz tonic concentrate (see below for info)
  • top with club soda
  • lime wedge garnish
  • optional: add some mint leaves and a mint sprig

Now the individual components of this particular G&T include Juniper Green Organic Gin and Jack Rudy Tonic. Juniper Green has a touch of sweetness and a fresh, minty, herbal flavor ($33 a bottle). Jack Rudy is a traditional tonic that comes in a cool apothecary bottle ($32 for 2- 17 oz bottles). Jack Rudy has now spoiled me on tonics as it isn’t overly sweet and has more quinine/bitter flavor.

Gin Rickey

gin rickey

For several months, a Gin and Tonic has been a good go-to drink for me.  I always get my tonic water at Whole Foods to avoid the high-fructose corn syrup that swims in Schwepp’s.  They have their own 365 Every Day Value brand for $2.50 for a six-pack of bar-friendly cans. Now while I like the flavor of tonic water, I wish I could reduce the sweetness of it.

Tonic water is bubbly water with quinine, citrus, and sugar.  Club soda is bubbly water, nothing more.  Whole Foods has some of that too. I googled club soda, lime, and gin to discover it’s already a common cocktail that I have heard of several times: The Gin Rickey!  Here’s the recipe:

Gin Rickey

  • In a 10-oz glass filled with ice, combine:
  • 1 1/2 oz gin
  • juice of 1/2 to 1 whole lime (I like it with more)
  • top with club soda (about 3-4 ounces)

You’ll end up with a drier, more refreshing, more sour alternative to the Gin & Tonic!  Yum!