Back in May, my husband and I were sitting at the bar at ROOT Restaurant in the Fishtown area of Philadelphia waiting to have dinner (which ended up being wonderful). I was intrigued by the four Gin-Tonics on the cocktail menu, each made with a different combination of Bluecoat or Beefeater Gin, Fever Tree Mediterranean or Indian Tonic water, and different herbs, citrus, and spices. I wanted to try them all! Served in a short bucket glass with only one large ice cube, and the unmuddled herbs and citrus mixed right into the drink, it was the most beautiful Gin and Tonic I’d ever seen. I turned to my husband and said, “This is revolutionary!” He continued drinking his Old-Fashioned. He is used to me getting very excited about cocktails. Since that night, I’ve been unable to drink a Gin and Tonic prepared in any other way. The recipe I’m sharing today is my version, but all credit goes to ROOT for the inspiration! I chose The Botanist Gin because it was a birthday gift from very dear friends and because its flavor is very botanical. I thought it would go well with the cucumber slice, lime wheel, and basil that I added to the drink. I love anything Elderflower, especially when it’s combined with cucumber and lime, so I used Fever Tree’s Elderflower Tonic. I served it in the same bucket glass because the slight flare at the top allows the aroma of the drink to hit you right in the nose. I also kept the large ice cube because it melted slowly and looked so beautiful in the glass. I feel like most Gin and Tonics are served with lots of ice, and they dilute very quickly. This one did not (because of the large cube) and so I was able to sip and enjoy it. Use this recipe as a template and feel free to do your own experimenting with flavor combinations that you like! This is a built drink (just like yesterday’s Old-Fashioned) and so it will be made directly in the glass.
1.5 oz The Botanist Gin*
3 oz Fever Tree Elderflower Tonic Water**
1 sprig of basil (or several leaves if your prefer)
1 thin cucumber slice
1 thin lime slice
Place 1 large ice cube in a bucket glass. Add the gin and the tonic water and stir just long enough to get the drink to the point where it’s chilled. Add the basil, lime, and cucumber and stir again to bring out their aromas. Stand back and admire how beautiful it is. Sip and enjoy!
**Fever Tree products are available at Whole Foods, Mom’s Organic Market, Wegman’s, and some liquor stores.