Thirsty Thursday: A Brief History of the Gin & Tonic

April 7, 2011

Bombay Gin

"Of all the gin joints, in all the towns, in all the world..."

Ah yes, the quintessential British cocktail: the gin and tonic. Of all the different liquors, it seems like gin generates the greatest variety of opinions: either you love it or you hate it. So where did it all begin? In 18th century India, tonic water (carbonated water used as a vehicle for quinine) was used as a preventative medication against malaria. To make the bitter taste of the quinine more palatable, the soldiers of the British East India Company would combine the tonic water with gin - and thus, the Gin and Tonic was born! Anti-malarial and easy to make, this classic tall drink is quite refreshing on a long, hot day.

Gin and Tonic with Lime

4 oz ice, cubed

2 oz gin

2 oz (or 3 oz or 4 oz...) tonic water

1 TBSP fresh lime juice

Place ice in a high ball glass, filling into almost to the top. Pour gin, tonic and lime juice over the ice. Stir well and garnish with lime wedge. The amount of tonic water is up to you - from a 1:1 up to 1:5, all depends on how long you want your drink to last...


Photo by Sean Rogers1