Articles Tagged: Tonic Syrups

Tonic Water

Ruby D Tonic, Citrus Quinine Tonic

Ruby-D-Citrus-Tonic

Ruby D’s Citrus Quinine Tonic takes their main tonic syrup offering and subtracts some of the herbs and spices and instead veers in a totally different direction with citrus zest and citrus oils. It’s part of a series of tonic syrups which instead of cultivating a following based around catering to one subset of the tonic syrup market, Ruby D makes one for everybody. More spice. They got it. More bitter. That too. Citrus. That’s where we are today. So if the idea of a citrus forward tonic syrup doesn’t appeal to you, you can stop here. They make one that might be more to your tastes. But if your G&T demands more citrus, then here you are.

Tasting Notes

The nose has woody notes, orange flesh, grapefruit, and a lower sweet spiced base that slightly resembles cinnamon and allspice.

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Top 10s

Top 10 Tonic Waters

Navy Strength Gin and Tonic

Since our last update in 2012, we’ve reviewed a  lot more Tonic waters and syrups. Being one of our most popular features (ever) written, we felt it time to update based on several years of additional research. As always, you can check out our entire tonic review archive and search for your personal favorites.

A couple of quick considerations and notes: The list does not correspond directly with our star ratings (though there are many highly rated tonics on here). It instead looks at a tonic and how well it works in a wide range of G&T’s. It’s a guideline for what might be the most versatile, general recommendation. For those looking for something more specific, there are lots of excellent tonics that don’t appear here, even though we love them.

Also, tonic waters and syrups appear side by side on this year’s list, though we may break them out in the future. I’m curious to hear what you think, do you consider tonic waters and syrups side by side? Or are they their own thing? Let me know in the comments. Without further ado, here’s your top 10 for 2015.

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Tonic Water

Bradley’s Bourbon Barrel Aged Kina Tonic

Bradley's Kinda Barrel Aged Tonic Syrup

We’ve reviewed Bradley’s Kina Tonic () here before, and well we quite liked it. Like a lot. So naturally, we’re excited about their latest offering, a first as far as we know, a tonic syrup aged in barrels which held Bourbon and after that Big Gin (). Yes, that is a lot of stars between the two of them.

Tasting Notes

The nose is fresh with a lot of vibrancy. Orange oil, hints of ginger and fresh tree bark. It has a summery, backyard sort of aroma to it. Bright citrus at first, lemon and orange, with a lemongrass/lemon verbena note in the middle. Wood comes through mid-palate, with shades of cedar and cherry. Cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and even a dash of lavender. The finish is clean, and brisk with the quinine being remarkably subtle.

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Tonic Water

Hibiscus Strong Tonic

strong-hibiscus-tonic

Previously, we’ve reviewed Strong Tonic’s Extraordinary Tonic Syrup (). From Oklahoma City, they’ve done quite well since their launch and their newest product is a floral spin on their initial offering. Hibiscus has begun appearing in a few contemporary style gins, but has nowhere reached the popularity of Elderflower. So you’re not going to have the same frequency of flavor convergence when mixing with this syrup. But you are going to add a floral touch to your drink. So if that’s not your style of G&T there’s probably not much that will convince you. But if you are, well then you’re in for a treat.

The syrup is thick and viscous, but still flowing. It’s a lovely oxblood in hue, which lightens dramatically when mixed in a cocktail. The nose is bright and sweet, with molasses, fruit cake, cinnamon sugar, and hibiscus tea notes. Sipping on its own, you can really appreciate how bold an assertive the quinine component is in here. It’s not a floral mixer, it is clearly a tonic. Sweet, with cinnamon, nutmeg, raisins, and the finish is bright and slightly spice with a refreshing hibiscus after taste.

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