It’s World Gin Day today (June 11), so you might be thinking of enjoying a G&T. However, according to an expert, there are a lot of things that can go wrong with this classic.
Spirits company Quintessential Brands has teamed up with food scientist Natalie Alibrandi to reveal the best tips for making the perfect G&T – and it’s all about the glass, the shape of the ice and never stirring more than two time.
Glass is king
Starting with the most important glass, the ideal type is a Copa de Balon, bulbous in shape and sitting on a stem similar to a red wine glass, the design allows it to hold plenty of ice while the tall stem prevents spills. warm hands from melting ice. The balloon shape allows the botanical aromas and vapors to be contained within the glass, for a more aromatic drinking experience for the palate and nose. Ideal lens measurements are between 500ml and 800ml, with a stem length of 9.5cm to 12.5cm and a rim diameter of 75mm to 95mm.
The right tonic
Next, the tonic – and the higher the quality, the better. Natalie says, “Tonic water with higher carbonation is best, so check the label. A carbonation level of 4.5 CO₂ is ideal, as lower carbonation will have lower CO₂ retention and lose bubbles and the desired mouthfeel over time. By opting for a tonic water with a carbonation level of 4.5, it will have extended stability, allowing you to enjoy your G&T for longer.”
Cans and glass bottles maintain better carbonation for tonics and other mixers than plastic bottles, which tend to have greater air permeability. Mini-cans or single-use recyclable glass bottles are best, and the tonic should be poured slowly – never stir more than twice or you run the risk of your drink losing its fizz faster.
Ice cream, ice cream, baby
Ice cream is, well, just ice cream, right? Bad. It should be fresh and recently frozen for the best G&T taste – and the more ice cubes the better, allowing for slower melting with less risk of dilution. The less surface area of ice exposed to the hotter G&T liquid, the slower it melts – the most common shape of ice is the rectangular cube made in ice trays, but it has a large surface area and melts quickly.
The optimal shape of ice cream is the crescent, which is much stronger and therefore retains its shape longer and melts more slowly. It is also thinner than rectangular ice cubes, allowing for more ice in the glass. The crescent ice cream should be half an inch wide, one and a half inches deep, and one and a half inches high.
The temperature of the drink is also important and gin should ideally be stored in the freezer, with the glass cool and the ice freshly frozen. By ensuring that these three parts are very cold, the overall gin and tonic will warm up at a lower rate. A cold drink numbs the taste buds and creates a milder tasting alcohol rather than having a strong bite to the aftertaste.
Finally we have the filling and it’s time to change the lime. Gin contains terpenoid compounds which are responsible for its complex flavor profile – terpenes are the odor molecules found in plants and are what add to the unique aroma and flavor profiles of the different ingredients. Surprisingly, the results revealed that the most common terpenes found in London Dry Gin were best complemented by the unusual combination of mango and pine filling.
Natalie adds: “The optimum drinking time is at a temperature of 21°C and above – not too hot to melt your drink, but hot enough for the G&T to be cool and refreshing. To ensure a gin and tonic is enjoyed while keeping all variables in mind, it should be consumed within 30 minutes. The carbonation level will have reduced by nearly half after 30 minutes, while the ice will likely melt within 15-20 minutes.”
Finally, if a G&T is ideal to start an evening, according to Natalie, care must be taken not to skip lunch: “A neutral palette is ideal for appreciating the complex flavors of a G&T and it should always be drunk responsibly for a pleasure. optimum.
“You shouldn’t drink on an empty stomach because of the speed at which it passes through your stomach and into the small intestine and be careful not to drink it too quickly.”
The perfect gin pairing may depend on the spirit’s different flavor profile. For a floral or fruity gin like BLOOM Gin, pair it with a citrus dessert like chamomile and lemon baked apples; these delicious ingredients will enhance the refreshing taste notes and terpenes present in the gin.
Other terpenes found in gin like Myrcene pair well with savory dishes due to the herbal notes. For a spiced gin such as the multi-award-winning OPHIR European Edition Spiced Gin, pair it with foods such as salmon or a herb-based pasta dish, to enhance the herbal and citrus notes of your G&T.
For a classic London dry gin, such as Greenall’s Original London Dry Gin, a strong and smoky cheese board provides the ultimate combination. The contrasting flavors of cheese and gin make a great pairing and the bitterness of the tonic acts as a refreshing palette cleanser for maximum enjoyment.
Joanne Moore, Master Gin Distiller at Quintessential Brands, five-time winner of the Best Gin Producer trophy at the International Spirits Challenge since 2014, says: “A G&T is the number one alcoholic drink in the UK for a reason, but the way it’s served can really take it from good enough to exceptional.
“We’ve been making gin since 1761 and want consumers to get the most out of our award-winning gins. It’s been really interesting to see how this formula improves the taste of our BLOOM, OPIHR and Greenall’s gins to help all drinkers, whether Whether you’re a budding enthusiast or a gin fanatic, savor the best quality G&T possible in the comfort of your own home.
The 12 steps for a perfect G&T:
1. Cool your gin (-18ºC)
2. Chill a Copa de Balon glass (-4ºC)
3. Cool tonic water (5ºC)
4. Make fresh ice cream – crescent ice cubes are best
5. Use small units of tonic water with higher carbonation (4.5 CO₂), ideally from a can or glass bottle
6. Create the perfect garnish using a piece of lemongrass, dried mango and sprig of pine
seven. Fill the chilled glass to the brim with fresh ice cubes
8. Pour 50ml of chilled London Dry Gin into the glass
9. Pour 150 ml of chilled tonic water into the glass
ten. Add the mango and a pine branch
11. Stir gently
12. Enjoy (within 30 minutes or your efforts will be in vain!)
Finally, don’t use a straw, as sipping from the glass provides more aroma and enhances the experience.