Tonic Syrups

Here at Booze Nerds HQ we have three different tonic syrups, because sometimes plain old tonic water just doesn’t cut it. For those of you who don’t know, tonic syrup can be added to carbonated water to to make tonic water, though much nicer tonic water than you can get at the grocery store. It’s great because it makes delicious tonic and you don’t have to pay for the carbonation. But it’s also awesome because it gives you more flexibility for experimenting with drinks, which is what we’re all about. The three tonic syrups we currently have are John’s Premium Tonic Syrup, Bradley’s Kina Tonic Syrup and the Wakefield Cromwell Honey Tonic Syrup from Jawn Wakefield. We decided to compare all three in gin & tonics, and see what they each bring to the party.

tonicsyrup-finalTo make the drinks, we followed the recipe on each tonic bottle for their G & T. How unlike us. 🙂 We used the Sun Liquor Gun Club gin since it is nice and sturdy and can stand up to the tonic, and muddled half a lime in each because we prefer lots of lime in our G & T’s.

Wakefield Cromwell Honey Tonic Syrup

  • 1 1/2 oz gin
  • 3/4 oz tonic syrup
  • 2 1/4 oz club soda
  • Nose: Sweet tea and floral notes.
  • Palate: Really strong honey flavor at the start, subtle clove notes on the mid-palate. Gentle bitter kick at the end. The gin and lime are more in the background compared to the others. Sweetest and least bitter of the three.

Bradley’s Kina Tonic

  • 2 oz gin
  • 1 oz tonic syrup
  • 3 oz club soda
  • Nose: Lime and a little bit of chamomile.
  • Palate:  Sweet, subtle cinnamon notes to start, then provides a nice platform for the gin and lime. Sweet but still has a nice bitter kick on the end.

John’s Premium Tonic Syrup

  • 1 1/2 oz gin
  • 1/2 oz tonic syrup
  • 3 oz club soda
  • Nose: Lime, bitter quinine.
  • Palate: Gin and lime to start. Light cola and honey at the mid-palate, along with dark earthy notes, somewhat like a pu-erh tea. Big bitter quinine kick on the finish. Very lightly sweet. Most bitter and least sweet of the three.

All of these tonic syrups are fairly different and quite enjoyable. We highly recommend any of them if you can lay hands on them. They’re great for just straight up G&T’s, but they’re also great for experimenting with, if you want to add complexity to a drink, similar to bitters. Definitely worth playing with, especially for hot weather drinks.

Thanks to Jawn Wakefield in particular for giving us a sneak peak of his tonic. We hope he continues to make it, as it’s a great addition to our bar.

This entry was posted in Cocktail Comparisons, gin, Tasting Notes, tonic and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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