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Choosing the right mixer for your spirit



Does anyone else find that some gins clash with certain tonics? We had the Society high strength gin at the weekend - delicious, but with Fever tree standard tonic it had a “foosty” taste, something neither tonic or gin smelt of on their own.

And just to edit, tried the same gin (excellent if you like muscular juniper strong spirit) with the world’s cheapest tonic from our village shop, via the cash and carry, and it’s lovely with the gin able to shine through.

To be fair to Fever Tree, it worked very well last week with Tanquery, another strong juniper based gin. All very odd.

Your favourite gin?

Apologies for the source of the link, but I was introduced to the idea of premium tonics by a friend and since I’ve not tried them, I’m just sharing it.

It amazes me that we can have such variety of gins, but that the tonic market is dominated by two brands only (one of them pretty new to the game too).

Has anyone tried any of these?


Fever tree, I have the blue one and my wife has the yellow one - the ‘naturally lighter’ one that I have is half the calories and by the time I’ve added some tin I can’t tell the difference.

A couple of years ago we made our own blends of gin at the Ginstitute, Portobello Road. It was a really interesting evening in which they disparaged Schweppes and gave us “1724” which is apparently the height above sea level that the quinine is harvested for that particular tonic.

During the evening they said that if you didn’t want to shell out for premium tonic then Waitrose Essentials tonic was pretty good (not the low cal version).


That tonic syrup sure looks interesting from BTW… might pop in the Covent Garden shop to check.


IMHO if a spirit is not a pleasure to drink neat then there is no point in using it for any purpose (other than perhaps an ethanol lamp)


not sure I agree completely with that sentiment. I am sure there are plenty of spirits that, in combination with each other or with mixers, make a pleasant drink, but on their own are harsh or offer limited pleasure

I can’t imagine drinking gin neat, for example, but it is perfectly nice when in a G&T or maybe a martini (only ever had 1, so not an expert)

having said that, I’m no spirits fan usually so maybe others really enjoy those same spirits without adornment


I accept my opinion may be extreme on this point.


I can’t quite agree with this and yet there is a degree of truth in it.- some of the best spirits I’ve tried, which continue to have a place in my drinks cabinet bottle after bottle, are ones that are so balanced that it is a pleasure to drink them neat or in short cocktails with very little mixer. Warner Edwards gin, for example, is lovely to sip over ice, and remains a firm favourite.

@dinkydodah Back to your original point - yes! I often find certain gins work better with plain/understated tonics (so their botanicals can shine through), whereas others shine with more fragrant ones. I don’t buy into a ‘Fever Tree is best’ mentality at all - I often use Aldi’s diet tonic and it’s a lovely base for the more fragrant, spicy gins I like to drink. :slight_smile: