This is something we’ve never done before, but have heard from our readers that they would like to see something like this. We’ve reviewed quite a few Tonic Waters, but which is the best?
Or more appropriately, which do we think is the best at this point in 2012? Let’s take a closer look. But unlike gin, we have some disambiguation in here. This list will contain syrups [which could use, but do not require soda water] and regular classic pre-carbonated tonic waters. So your mileage may vary depending on which you might prefer…
Todd Thrasher’s Tonic
If you’ve come around to Tonic syrups, then Thrasher’s tonic is worth seeking out. One of the best blends of flavor, herbs and sweetness. An easy favorite for me this year.Review Quote: “I’d say many tonic syrups are for people who already love the taste of quinine and rich herbal concoctions. Thrasher’s tonic, not so much. Its sweet, nicely balanced, and has an appeal that spans a wider array of drinkers.”
Fever Tree Tonic
Perhaps the best of the pre-carbonated tonics in my opinion.
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Diet tonic water is a funny thing to me. Firstly, considering how many good high quality tonics are out there which have calories under 50 per serving [Q Tonic, the two Indian Tonics]. The market position of a diet tonic is clear to me. It is for folks who want a sweet gin and tonic, but they don’t want any calories.
Now, as a preface, I’ll ask: if you’re having gin [rife with calories] can’t you spare the extra 50 to mix it with a real tonic water?
Okay, but perhaps you can’t Perhaps you have a good reason. Let’s see what this diet tonic water has to offer:
Almost watery upfront, clean and club soda like. Fizzy with a bit of bubbles. The effervescence fades quickly to a slight dash of bitterness [this is in line with the non diet version of Canada Dry] and then that saccharine mouth puckering sweetness. Its a bit drying on the palette, reminiscent of the way that Q Tonic or even Indian Tonics feel at the end of the taste; though I find a little bit of an acidic sweetness lingering on the back of the palette after tasting.
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I walked into my next door bodega, and asked if if they had any tonic water. He said, “We have club soda, it’s the same thing.” I kindly told him that it’s not. He asked me, “What are you making?”
“Gin and Tonic,” I said.
“Yep, the same thing. Club soda and Tonic water are the same thing. Trust me, I’m a bartender.”
I muttered something about how it wasn’t, (“Trust me”) and left. The next day, though, there were six tonic waters in the case just for me.
My bodega stocks Canada Dry, and therefore when the rain comes in, the weather changes, snow on the horizon, its 11:38 pm and I’m out of tonic or I’m lazy, I’m drinking Canada Dry.
Canada Dry is another sweet tonic water. High Fructose Corn Syrup, a pleasing flavor of quinine. It’s much more noticeably sweet than Schweppes. Canada Dry isn’t going to overpower any of your gins, but it’s also not built to compliment any of them. It’s a perfectly acceptable tonic water that has mass appeal.
It’s less carbonated than Q tonic and more in line with your standard sort of carbonated beverage.
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