William M. Dowd photoThere are a lot of tonic waters on the market, but the makers of Fever-Tree Premium Indian Tonic Water have figured out a way to set their product apart from the others.
First, what it doesn't contain:
• Artificial preservatives
• Artificial ingredients
Now, what it does have:
• Natural botanicals
• Spring water
• Cane sugar
Fever-Tree's "natural botanicals" are cold-pressed Tanzanian bitter orange oils, coriander and lime oils and African marigold, combined with the cane sugar and spring water, plus natural quinine from the fever-tree (Cinchona ledgeriana) itself.
It has a clear look, a slightly fruity nose, and a hint of natural sweetness followed by a slight bite on the tongue from the quinine and botanicals.
It retails for a suggested $5.99 for a four-pack of 200ml bottles.
I've tried Fever-Tree at home (clean, bracing), and spotted it in bars abroad -- at the trendy Tonic bar on North Castle Street in Edinburgh, Scotland, last week, as just one example. Bar manager Sam Kershaw (above), who splits his time between Scotland and New York, was using it to whip up such drinks as the "Mint Chocolate Chip Russian," the "Cherry Blossom Buck" and the "Clover Tree."
The Fever-Tree folks, however, suggest first trying their product in this classic cocktail:
GIN & TONIC
1 part premium gin
2 parts Fever-tree tonic
Fresh ice or tonic ice
Keep gin in freezer until use. If desired, make ice cubes ahead of time using the tonic water to prevent dilution.
Mix gin and tonic in a chilled red-wine balloon glass, stirring over several tonic ice cubes. Garnish with either a sprig of fresh mint, a wedge or wheel of lemon or lime, or even a wheel of cucumber. If using citrus, use only the peel to prevent introduction of unwanted oils.
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