If you better know the name Harvey Nichols— and my bet is if you do you’re a reader of mine from the UK— you probably know it as a luxury department store. I mean, I’m hardly an expert in these things— but let me take a stab for my American readers— they’re kind of like a Bergdorf Goodman that also sells food.
Did you Know???
Harvey Nichols has its own brand of gin and vodka?
Well they also sell a ton of mixers, including their own house brand Harvey Nichols Tonic Water. Their flagship water features a “twist of cucumber and lime,” while being produced by Summerhouse Drinks.
Harvey Nichols Tonic Water is sweetened with sugar and features precise percentages of natural flavoring on the back: 15% cucumber; 5% lime flavoring. Harvey Nichols Tonic is also rather low in calories. Only 36 calories per 200 mL bottle, that means Harvey’s Tonic is actually lower in calorie than some other mixers marketed as skinny or low calorie.
Pleasant effervescence in the glass with a ton of small, very tight bubbles. Cucumber is very strong on the nose with Harvey Nichols Tonic Water. It reminds me of a cucumber soda.
The palate is nicely cucumber forward with a gentle lime back-end that mostly gets hidden by the quinine after note. The bitterness is clean and crisp, lasting for a fair amount of time before fading to a dry, slightly vegetal finish.
Harvey Nichols Tonic is more of a flavored tonic than a straight up tonic water. I mixed it with Lifted Spirits Bright Gin and thought that while the cucumber note fought with the gin’s prominent and contemporary styled mid-palate, it did add a pleasant amount of quinine and a well-balanced approach to sweetness.
As a flavored tonic however, I prefer Harvey Nichols Tonic far more with unbalanced, heavy juniper forward— or otherwise one dimensional gins. The cucumber of Harvey Nichols Tonic vies to be the star. And while I’d assuredly recommend this tonic water as a pleasant dry soda, Harvey Nichols Tonic Water has some challenges in creating balanced G&T’s.
Overall, I think while it’s a good and flavorful tonic water, it could do with a little less cucumber on the mid-palate. Otherwise, Harvey Nichols Tonic water is a delicious tonic water with a balanced sweetness that’s probably best suited to dressing up mediocre gins rather than complementing a more complex gin.