KARAKTER'S GUIDE FOR THE
PERFECT GIN TONIC (RECIPE)
Friday night is approaching and we have invited our friends to dinner. We have spent most of our time thinking about food, but we have quickly decided for gin and tonic as the right drink for the occasion.
We can already imagine us running through the store, locating the section with spirits and grabbing the first bottle that says GIN. And on the way to the cash register we remember to pick up a large bottle of tonic and tick off the drink from the shopping list... Or we can read the Karakter's guide for the perfect gin and tonic, try out the recipe and create the right atmosphere for our next gathering.
In the post below, we’ve put together some tips for making first-class gin and tonics that will delight your guests and help you answer to questions such as: Why is your G&T so much better than ours?
WHAT MAKES GIN TONIC PERFECT? GIN? TONIC? SPICES?
CHOICE OF GIN
Choosing the right gin is the most important step in preparing an awesome gin and tonic, as the characteristics of the gin have the greatest impact on the quality, taste and aroma of the cocktail. With such variety of gins on the market, it makes sense to take some time to find the right gin for the occasion.
PRICE OF GIN
The price range of gin ranges from 8 to 90 € per liter. The price depends on several factors, the most important of which are the type of gin, the use of natural ingredients, the size of the production and the concern for quality. Some gins, usually more affordable, are made solely by mixing artificially produced flavors and alcohol. Of course, there is nothing wrong with such gin, but we can expect to be a bit more cranky in the next morning. Therefore, we advise the selection and support of smaller distillers, who, due to smaller production, find it easier to control the quality, improve the recipe, use local herbs and purify alcohol more carefully. Local micro distilleries in Slovenia have become more frequent in recent years, and by supporting them, we are expanding the culture of boutique spirits.
TYPE OF GIN
When choosing gin, the type or style of gin matters. In case you are interested in classical gin or if you are just starting to explore the world of gin, we advise you the London Dry type of gin. The label "London Dry gin" or "Dry Gin" tells us that the gin was made by distillation and does not contain essential oils or other artificial flavors. For the advanced or the more curious gin enthusiast, who like to try new combinations, we recommend choosing New western style gin (less classical).
The difference between London Dry gin and New western style gin is that in London Dry gin the taste and aroma of juniper berries predominate, and after distillation the gin can only be diluted with clean drinking water. New western style gins still contain juniper, but they don’t put it in the foreground. Thus, completely different characteristics of aroma and taste can be detected in such gins. After distillation, the New western style gin can be diluted only with pure drinking water (Imagine dry gin), or various infusions are added to it, which give the gin colour, aroma and taste (The Cherriot infused gin).
TONIC FOR GIN
Tonic is the second most important ingredient in a gin and tonic cocktail and accounts for more than half of the drink. Therefore, quality gin simply won't be enough, it is also necessary to choose a quality tonic.
The number of different tonics in the market is still growing, but we can divide them according to price, quality and aroma. In principle, we follow the rule that we do not use sweet tonics to mix cocktails, as this can completely overshadow the taste and aroma of gin.
Neutral tonics are a suitable choice for mixing cocktails, especially when we want to emphasize the taste of the gin itself. Nowadays, flavored tonics are becoming more common in specialised bars and restaurants. When choosing a flavored tonic, it is advisable to consider the ingredients of the gin and combine them with the appropriate tonic, as the added flavor can enrich the flavor of the gin, or spoil it completely.
GIN AND TONIC RATIO
One of the key contributors for preparing an awesome G&T is definitely the ratio of gin to tonic. It is recommended to mix in a ratio of 1 gin : 2 tonics, which should be your starting point for the preparation of a cocktail. Afterwards, a tonic can be added according to the personal wishes of each individual.
Stronger gins usually require a little more tonic, as this regulates the intensity of the alcohol base. For those who like to experiment, they can try adjusting the ratio to taste - after all, you can always add some more gin or tonic to the glass.
For those who like to taste pure gin, it should be served at room temperature in a tasting glass (narrow glass on a stalk) for spirits, without ice and decoration.
CHOICE OF BOTANICALS AND DECORATION
The decoration of cocktails is just like the ratio of gin and tonic, something that depends on each individual and his desires. In general, for decoration or garnish, use ingredients that are already present in the gin, as this emphasizes the most pronounced components of the taste and aroma of the gin. It is also important that gin and tonics are not too "crowded" with an abundance of different ingredients, as this easily overshadows the whole drink. The principle "less is more" should serve as a guide in decorating your cocktails.
ICE AND HOW TO SERVE
Gin tonic is a drink that we drink cold. Before pouring the drink, fill the glass with ice. It is recommended that all other ingredients are cooled as well. If the drink is served cold, it will retain bubbles for a longer time, and in addition, it will be much more refreshing.
KARAKTER'S IMAGINE GIN TONIC RECIPE
• 40 ml Imagine Dry Gin
• 1 dcl Fever tree Mediterranean tonic
• Decoration: Whole fresh red currant berries / crushed black currant berries
Instructions for preparation:
Place some blackcurrant berries in a chilled glass and grate them. Cover with ice and slowly pour 40 ml of Imagine Dry Gin and 1 dcl of tonic into the glass over the ice. Stir lightly with a spoon and serve the perfect dark purple Karakter Gin Tonic. The mixture wonderfully combines the fruitiness of the gin with a slightly sour taste and a very mild currant scent, which is also used during distillation.
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ABOUT KARAKTER DISTILLERY
Karakter distillery, the only "official" distillery in Bohinj,
was founded in 2016 by three indigenous people from Bohinj,
friends since childhood.
Today, in addition to the distillation of gin and other craft spirits,
we organize live music events at our bar next to Lake Bohinj
and help develop the culinary scene in Slovenia.