Gin and Tonic Recipe - The Classic Refreshing British Cocktail

Gin and Tonic

Gin and Tonic Recipe - The Classic Refreshing British Cocktail
Region / culture: United Kingdom | Preparation time: 5 minutes | Servings: 1


Gin and Tonic
Gin and Tonic

Gin and Tonic is a classic cocktail that has been enjoyed for centuries. This refreshing drink is perfect for a hot summer day or as a pre-dinner aperitif. With its simple ingredients and easy preparation, it's a go-to cocktail for many.


The origins of the Gin and Tonic date back to the 19th century when British soldiers stationed in India would mix their daily ration of quinine (used to prevent malaria) with gin to make it more palatable. The addition of tonic water and a squeeze of lime or lemon created the iconic cocktail we know today.


How to prepare

  1. First, take a wedge of lime (or lemon, lime is preferable) and gently squeeze it while running it around the rim of the glass. Then, drop it into the bottom of the glass.
  2. Add a generous amount of ice, filling your glass to about 0.67 of its capacity.
  3. Pour the gin into the glass first, and then fill the glass to the top with tonic.


  • There are endless variations of the Gin and Tonic cocktail, including using different types of gin (such as flavored or barrel-aged gin) or tonic water (such as flavored or artisanal tonic). You can also experiment with different garnishes like cucumber slices, herbs, or berries.


  1. You should always pour the alcohol first so that stirring is not required.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

When making a Gin and Tonic, be sure to use high-quality gin and tonic water for the best flavor. The ratio of gin to tonic can be adjusted to suit your taste preferences - some prefer a stronger gin flavor while others prefer a more subtle taste. Experiment with different types of gin and tonic water to find your perfect combination.

Serving Suggestions

Gin and Tonic is best served in a tall glass filled with ice and garnished with a lime or lemon wedge. Enjoy it as a refreshing drink on its own or pair it with light appetizers or seafood dishes.

Cooking Techniques

The key to a great Gin and Tonic is using fresh ingredients and quality spirits. Be sure to use plenty of ice to keep your drink cold and refreshing.

Ingredient Substitutions

If you prefer a non-alcoholic version, you can substitute the gin with non-alcoholic gin or simply omit it altogether for a classic tonic water with lime.

Make Ahead Tips

Gin and Tonic is best made fresh to enjoy its crisp and bubbly flavors. However, you can prepare the lime wedges and chill the glasses ahead of time for quick assembly.

Presentation Ideas

For a more elegant presentation, serve Gin and Tonic in a crystal glass with a long, thin straw. You can also add a sprig of fresh herbs or edible flowers for a decorative touch.

Pairing Recommendations

Gin and Tonic pairs well with a variety of foods, including light salads, grilled seafood, and tapas. The crisp and citrusy flavors of the cocktail complement dishes with fresh and bright flavors.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Gin and Tonic is best enjoyed fresh and should not be stored for long periods. If you have leftover cocktail, cover it and store it in the refrigerator for up to a day. Stir before serving.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

One serving of Gin and Tonic typically contains around 120 calories, making it a relatively low-calorie cocktail option.


Gin and Tonic is a low-carb cocktail, with tonic water being the main source of carbohydrates. One serving typically contains around 10 grams of carbohydrates.


Gin and Tonic is a low-fat cocktail, with gin containing minimal amounts of fat. One serving typically contains less than 1 gram of fat.


Gin and Tonic is a protein-free cocktail, as neither gin nor tonic water contain significant amounts of protein.

Vitamins and minerals

Gin and Tonic contains a small amount of vitamin C from the lime or lemon wedge. Tonic water may also contain small amounts of minerals such as potassium and magnesium.


Gin and Tonic may contain allergens such as sulfites in tonic water. Be sure to check the labels if you have allergies or sensitivities.


Overall, Gin and Tonic is a relatively low-calorie and low-carb cocktail option. It is best enjoyed in moderation as part of a balanced diet.


Gin and Tonic is a classic cocktail with a rich history and a refreshing taste. With its simple ingredients and easy preparation, it's a versatile drink that can be enjoyed on any occasion. Experiment with different variations to find your perfect Gin and Tonic recipe.

How did I get this recipe?

The first time I saw this recipe, I was drawn to it like a moth to a flame. It was a warm summer day, and I was visiting my dear friend Margaret, who had just returned from a trip to India. She had brought back a small notebook filled with exotic recipes she had collected during her travels. As we sat in her cozy kitchen, sipping iced tea and catching up on each other's lives, Margaret handed me the notebook and told me to pick a recipe to try.

I flipped through the pages, my eyes scanning the unfamiliar names and ingredients. And then, I saw it: Gin and Tonic. The name alone conjured up images of old Hollywood glamour and sophisticated cocktail parties. I had never tried a Gin and Tonic before, but something about the sound of it intrigued me. I turned to Margaret and asked her about the recipe.

"Oh, that old thing," she chuckled. "It's a simple drink, really. Just a splash of gin, some tonic water, and a squeeze of lime. Refreshing and perfect for a hot summer day."

I was sold. Margaret showed me where she kept her stash of gin and tonic water, and I set to work mixing up my first Gin and Tonic. I carefully measured out the ingredients, following Margaret's instructions to the letter. The scent of the gin, with its juniper and citrus notes, mingled with the tangy aroma of the tonic water and the zesty lime. I poured the mixture over ice in a tall glass, added a slice of lime for garnish, and took a sip.

It was like nothing I had ever tasted before. The sharp bite of the gin was tempered by the effervescence of the tonic water, and the lime added a refreshing citrus kick. It was the perfect balance of sweet and sour, bitter and bubbly. I was hooked.

Over the years, I made Gin and Tonics for every occasion. I served them at family gatherings, girls' nights out, and lazy summer afternoons by the pool. Each time, I would tweak the recipe slightly, experimenting with different gins, tonic waters, and garnishes. I discovered that a good quality gin with botanical notes worked best, and that the ratio of gin to tonic water was crucial for achieving the perfect balance of flavors.

As I shared my newfound love for Gin and Tonics with friends and family, I began to collect their own variations on the classic recipe. My cousin Sarah swore by adding a splash of elderflower liqueur to her Gin and Tonic, while my neighbor Tom preferred to mix his with a sprig of fresh rosemary. I tried them all, delighting in the endless possibilities for customization.

One summer, my husband surprised me with a trip to Spain, where Gin and Tonics are practically a national treasure. We wandered through the bustling streets of Barcelona, stopping at tiny bars and cafes to sample the local versions of my favorite drink. I was amazed by the creativity and artistry that went into each Gin and Tonic, with bartenders using exotic botanicals, homemade syrups, and even smoke infusions to elevate the simple cocktail to a work of art.

Inspired by what I had seen in Spain, I returned home and set about perfecting my own signature Gin and Tonic recipe. I experimented with different garnishes, from fresh herbs to edible flowers to exotic fruits. I infused my own tonic water with spices and botanicals, creating a unique flavor profile that complemented the gin perfectly.

The result was a Gin and Tonic unlike any I had ever tasted before. It was a symphony of flavors and aromas, with each ingredient playing its part to create a harmonious whole. The gin provided a strong backbone of juniper and citrus, the tonic water added a refreshing effervescence, and the garnish added a burst of color and fragrance. It was a drink that could transport me back to the bustling streets of Barcelona with just one sip.

And so, my journey with Gin and Tonics continues to this day. I have shared my recipe with friends and family, sparking their own love affair with this classic cocktail. I have even passed it down to my grandchildren, who now clamor for their own special version of Grandma's Gin and Tonic. And as I sit in my kitchen, sipping my favorite drink and reminiscing about the adventures and memories it has brought me, I am grateful for that fateful day when I first saw the recipe that would change my life.


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