Vintage Tonic

Vintage Tonic WaterFirstly, some of you might recognize this as a store brand of tonic. And you might wonder “why on Earth would I be reviewing this?”

To that I shake my head. If you ignore store brands, you miss out on some surprising things. Write off store brands, and you write off the actually-pretty-good 365 Tonic Water from Whole Foods. So naturally, after having this tonic at a party the previous weekend [while I was drinking mind you- it was the house tonic in the party tent] I thought I would give this previously overlooked tonic its due and I quickly picked up two bottles…. At the price point of 79 cents, how could I go wrong?

Let Me Count the Ways
Firstly Vintage Tonic is a bit too sweet. Although there is requisite quinine in here, there’s a bit of a mouth puckering syrupy-sweet note, vaguely reminiscent of store brand colas, in the way that the don’t have the “bite” or “sharpness” that Coke or Pepsi do. It tastes less carbonated [and this was the first serving] than similar inexpensive tonic waters.

I should say that in tonics that cost less than 2 dollars per liter [Canada Dry, Schweppes, Polar, etc] I don’t expect complexity, depth, or even balance. I hope for a slightly sweet soda with some quinine flavor. What you get here isn’t quite that. Its an overly sweet, slightly bitter, and overall disappointing tonic water.

Sure,  I didn’t notice at the fiesta. I was too busy having a good time: dancing, singing [yes, singing], eating food etc. [Even Gin Bloggers take nights off!]. So it can be said without a doubt that tonic waters like this have a place [such as when you need to quench the thirst of a hundred of your closest family and friends] and other times where I’d recommend splurging for the Canada Dry or similar. Even at double the cost its worth it to upgrade a bit.

Price: ~.80/Liter
Best consumed: With inexpensive party gin. If you’re drinking some of the gins I talk about on here, I’d recommend at the very least trading up to the Canada Dry level.
Availability: Most grocery stores
Rating: A little to sweet and not enough quinine for my tastes. Treat it as a party supply and nothing more. 

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Last updated August 22nd, 2012 by Aaron Knoll

2 thoughts on “Vintage Tonic

  • July 20, 2018by J Gabron

    I cannot stand tonic water, and have to drink it for leg cramping due to restless leg syndrome. Vintage tonic tastes less bitter than the other brands and it’s the only one I can stomach.

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