With only three ingredients – gin, tonic and a garnish – the gin and tonic is often served in what appears to be an extremely simple serve. However, rarely has such a ‘simple’ drink been treated with such reverence, obsession and attention to detail.
History of the gin and tonic
In some history books, the gin and tonic began as a medicinal treatment. Tonic, with the addition of quinine-containing bark – believed to be a potent antimalarial – was lauded in India after the British Crown took over the governance of the country and malaria became the primary concern. While tonic on its own was deemed unpleasant and bitter, when gin and lime was added it became extremely popular – possibly down to its recreational benefits.
The gin and tonics of today are diverse and exciting, with extravagant garnishes (think anything from Szechuan peppercorns to bell peppers), herbs, unique citrus fruits and artisan tonic waters.
Flash infusion technique
There are many ways to enhance your gin and tonic – using fruit peel or skin as opposed to a wedge of citrus fruit; choosing the right tonic; experimenting with different mixology techniques.
One way of flavouring gin is to use flash infusion. The cocktail mixology technique is a fast infusion method using cream whippers, such as the iSi’s Cream Whipper, to extract flavour from ingredients – fresh basil leaves, vanilla beans, spicy chilli, tea – and infuse with gin.
Yauatcha’s Head of Bar Eder Neto created a collection of Gin and Tea cocktails – a play on the ‘G&T’ monicker – by flash infusing Tanqueray No. 10 gin with a range of traditional Chinese teas, from floral jasmine green tea to smoky Puer Ya Jian black tea, and then adding light Fever-Tree tonic, the choice dependant on the tea – and citrus.
The collection of Gin and Tea cocktails are available at Yauatcha City, or you can make your own by following the below recipe.
To make your own flash infused Gin and Tea cocktail:
You will need a cream whipper. We use iSi’s 1 litre Gourmet Whip Plus.
Load the whipper with the room temperature gin of your choice. We get reliably good results infusing 120ml of gin with one charger, or 360ml of gin with two chargers.
Add the tea of your choice. Perhaps you want to infuse your gin with Classical Beauty blue tea, or Springtime Sencha green tea? Your choice of tea will change the taste of the cocktail.
Charge the whipper with N20 gas.
Gently swirl the whipper for 30 seconds.
Let the whipper stand for an additional five minutes.
Release the gas.
Pour the alcohol through a fine mesh strainer.
Add one part of your flavoured gin and three parts of your chosen Fever-Tree tonic water.