Back in 1825, British Army officers combined quinine, sugar and water to create a daily tonic. This was done to act as a malaria prophylaxis. Gin was later added to the mix to mask the strong and bitter taste of the quinine water.
189 years on, the quintessential gin and tonic has come a very long way. But not necessarily in a good way. The overly sweet citric acid soft drinks of our time have replaced genuine, traditional tonic water. These modern drinks completely mask the herbaceous aromas of premium gin and other spirits. In turn, manipulating the role that tonic water now plays in modern mixology.
But the most discerning patrons and barmen are demanding superior quality beverages to complement premium spirits. That’s why East Imperial is a collection curated like no other, with unparalleled quality and taste.
About the Grapefruit Tonic
The grapefruit was not discovered until the 18th century. Botanists believe it is the result of cross-breeding sweet oranges of Barbados with the pomelo, a citrus fruit native to Indonesia. The British knew that not only was this new fruit delicious, it was very good for you too. Sailors and explorers were favouring it over lime and lemons due to its natural higher vitamin C content.
Enter Harry Craddock, who was known in the 1930s for his fantastic cocktails at iconic London destinations, The Savoy and The Dorchester Hotel. In his journals and recipes he often spoke of using the ‘forbidden fruit’. His secrets remained somewhat shrouded in mystery until recent years. Inspired by Craddock, the guys from East Imperial have taken the South East Asian Pomelo, which delivers a deep rich orange note and carefully blended this with Ruby Red Grapefruit. This results in a tonic which delivers the ultimate citrus balance.
We recommend pairing Grapefruit Tonic with traditional London dry gins and citrus-forward spirits.
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