How to Make the Perfect Gin and Tonic, According to José Andrés
Plus, six spots in the United States where they put their own spin on the classic cocktail.
“In Spain, gin-tonic is not just a cocktail, it is an obsession,” says José Andrés. Here’s everything you need to know to nail this iconic drink at home—and six places in the States with excellent G&T options.
- In Spain, fresh herbs (lemon verbena, rosemary or lavender), lemon peel, juniper berries, edible flowers and even whole spices are used to enhance the gin’s botanicals.
- Spanish bars stock as many as 50 different gins. Our choice: a London dry style. José’s two favorites: Rives Special Premium Tridestilada from Andalusia and Xoriguer Gin de Mahón from Menorca.
- Amplify the aroma of the gin and the garnishes with a large wine glass or goblet.
- Big ice cubes keep your gin-tonic chilled without watering it down.
- Look for tonic made with cane sugar or agave (not high-fructose syrup), such as Q, Fever-Tree or Fentimans, for a balanced mix of sweetness cut with quinine bitterness.
Of all the gin joints...
Pagu: 310 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA; 617-945-9290
Make your own with Pagu’s tasting tray of gins, tonics and garnishes.
La Vara: 268 Clinton St., Brooklyn; 718-422-0065
Try riffs on the classic formula with housemade quinine syrup or Spanish soda.
Jaleo: Multiple locations
Check out the gin and tonic festival in March and April.
El Chipiron: 2717 S. Lamar Blvd., Austin; 512-518-3618
Chef Pablo Gómez Tollar takes Spain’s signature drink seriously at this new tapas spot.
Corrida: 1023 Walnut St., Boulder
Opening this fall. Bartenders will kick it old-school with tableside prep from a special cart.
Ashland Hill Brick Bar: 2807 Main St., Santa Monica; 310-392-3300
There are 11 G&Ts on the menu, or 55 gins and nine tonics to mix and match.