Tonic

Tonic

By
From
Spring
Makes
1 litre
Photographer
Andy Sewell

Once we started delving into making drinks, it seemed only natural to come up with our own tonic recipe. Quinine, which is derived from the bark of the cinchona tree, gives tonic its characteristic bitter quality. Malic acid, another ingredient, is a form of citric acid with a not unpleasant sour flavour; it helps to preserve cordials and also gives them a clarity of colour. I ordered some cinchona bark and malic acid online and began to experiment. There are some very good tonics on the market, so I’m not suggesting it is necessary to make your own, but this one will give you a particularly special gin and tonic.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
1 litre water
20g cinchona bark
1 lemongrass stalk, bruised
1 orange, finely grated zest
1 lime, finely grated zest
1 pink grapefruit, finely grated zest
375ml raw honey, (I use acacia)
1 1/2 teaspoons malic acid
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon orange flower water
soda water, to serve

Method

  1. Bring the water to the boil in a pan, then add the cinchona bark. Immediately take off the heat and add the lemongrass, orange, lime and grapefruit zests. Set aside to infuse for 20 minutes.
  2. Strain the infused water through a fine sieve into a bowl, discarding the flavourings. Add the honey, malic acid, ground allspice and orange flower water. Stir to encourage the honey to dissolve. Pour into a sterilised jar and keep in the fridge.
  3. To use, simply add 3 parts soda water to 1 part tonic. We have found that the perfect gin and tonic is made with 3 parts soda water, 2 parts gin and 1 part tonic syrup. It is also very nice if you add a splash of Campari!
Tags:
Skye Gyngell
seasonal
Spring
London
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