The Gin and Tonic seems to be a rather polarizing cocktail choice. It also happens to be one of my favorite cocktails. For whatever reason, a lot of people are taken off guard when a young-ish person requests a gin and tonic. Newsflash: it is NOT an old man’s drink and it does NOT taste like pine trees. With proper gin and high-quality tonic, you can create one of the most refreshing, crisp, and sophisticated cocktails known to man.
You know what else is sophisticated and awesome? Sangria. Are you thinking what I’m thinking?
Gin and tonic drinkers have a wide range of preferences when it comes to their garnishes and pairings. For me, it’s heavy on the gin and a healthy dose of fresh lime. For others, it could include cucumber, rosemary, orange zest, bitters, or any number of similar aromatic complements.
Gin pairs particularly well with fruit and wine because it is made with a blend of botanicals and herbs such as elderflower, coriander, orange peel, and juniper. As funny as it may sound now, gin was originally paired with tonic as a way to disguise the foul taste of quinine. Clearly, it’s not your average liquor.
Like the gin and tonic, sangria can also be made in a dizzying number of delicious ways. Red, white, or sparkling. Berries, citrus, or apples. Everybody has a preference and everybody makes it a little bit different. Me? I’ve yet to meet a sangria I didn’t like.
As with any good sangria, this is a drink that serves two purposes: it’s a snack and a buzz all in one convenient, refreshing, tall glass. I don’t know about you, but I really appreciate a beverage that can multitask.
We’ve spent the last couple of days packing and making lists and thinking of last minute necessities and rushing around to get ready for our road trip. Yes – after months of planning and excitement, the departure date has finally arrived! We’re leaving tomorrow for 2 1/2 to 3 weeks of driving, getting lost with an Atlas, camping in the backcountry, and smelling to high heavens.
But before we go, I have to shout-out our friends at Hella Bitters! It’s been quite a while since we shared a cocktail recipe. In fact, we haven’t shared one since way back in March when we won the #BitterBubbles contest using Hella Bitters’ delicious citrus bitters. The guys at Hella Bitters have a Kickstarter going on right now to fund their latest, and might I add, brilliant project. They have designed a kit that allows you to craft your own bitters at home! Check out their story, watch the video, and help them get their project rolling on Kickstarter.
Now that I’ve gotten that bit of news off my chest, it’s time for Clark and I to prop up our feet and enjoy a couple of tall glasses of Gin and Tonic Sangria. Because frankly, we’ve both had enough packing for one day.
- Juice of 2 limes
- 2 limes, sliced thin
- ½ of a large cucumber, sliced thin
- 1 bottle of semi-dry Pinot Grigio
- 3 oz. good gin
- 2 Tablespoons cane sugar
- Fever Tree Tonic or sparkling water
- Fresh rosemary
- In a large pitcher, add sugar, gin, and wine. Use a large spoon to stir until sugar dissolves.
- Add lime juice, sliced lime, cucumber, and rosemary.
- Top with high-quality tonic water or sparkling water, if you want to save a few calories!
- Refrigerate for an hour or until chilled.
- Serve with a garnish of fresh rosemary or lime.