Hump Day Happy Hour: Gin and Tonic, Spanish Style

Hola, amigos! Saludos desde Marbella, Spain!  Actually,  make that desde Seville since I’ll probably be on a bus headed that way when you read this.

As Emilie and I typically bring you something  to wet your whistle with on Wednesdays, I thought I would search for a nice Spanish cocktail for you.  Unfortunately, what I found out was that Spain does not have a signature cocktail. Mexico has it’s Margarita, Cuba the Mojito, Italy of course has the Martini, France the French 75, and so and so forth.  Other than sangria, which I have learned blatantly screams tourist (Summary: it’s a party drink, not a bar drink.  Good to know!), the Spanish have wine and beer and cider to keep them hydrated.  Before I gave up on my search, though, I finally came across something!  So here’s the scoop on the Spanish the cocktail front: the Spanish make an amazing Gin and Tonic…or Gin-Tonic.  There is a Gin-Tonic bar here in Marbella that I so want to check out before we leave!

So what makes a gin and tonic “Spanish style”.  I haven’t fully figured it out, but there seem to be two major tells. First is the glass you serve it in. Instead of a tall Collins glass, the Spanish will serve their Gin-Tonics in large brandy or wine glasses, or in a tumbler.  Second is the garnish. In addition to the tonic, you may find cinnamon, nutmeg, mint, or ginger in your cocktail. They get very creative in trying to pull out all the botanicals you’ll find in a gin.  Sometimes the chosen garnish is to enhance the flavors already in the gin , like lemon and cardamom. Others are more to compliment, like grapefruit or raspberries. I did a little bit of both here.  Lemon to enhance the citrus; and lime, sage, and Elderflower liquor to compliment the botanicals.  If only I could actually afford a bottle of St Germain, rather than just these airplane sizes I bought for this recipe. This drink is so refreshing. I know I’ll be craving this Gin-Tonic cocktail all summer!

Elderflower Gin and Tonic

serves 2

  • 2 oz Bombay Sapphire Gin (or any gin with more of a citrus highlight)
  • 2 oz St Germain (1 airplane bottle)
  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 6 fresh sage leaves, chopped
  • Tonic water to fill your glass
  • Ice for the shaker and for your drink.
  1. If you like, chill your chosen glasses in the fridge while you make the cocktail. I chose large, white wine glasses.
  2. Place the chopped sage leaves into a cocktail shaker and muddle them with a large spoon to help release the flavors of the herb.
  3. Add ice cubes to shaker
  4. Add the gin, St. Germain, and lemon and lime juices and shake vigoursly until the shaker is chilled to the touch.
  5. Add ice cubes to your glasses.
  6. Using a strainer, pour the Gin mixture into the glasses.
  7. Top with tonic water and cheers!

6 responses to “Hump Day Happy Hour: Gin and Tonic, Spanish Style

  1. Pingback: Seville: A More Sophisticated Spain | exploration

  2. Pingback: Au Revoir 2012 – A Look Back | corkandspoon

  3. Omg – this sounds so delicious. I am a big fan of gin cocktails and this is now at the top of my list! Que bueno y gracias!!

  4. Love this! It sounds so good and looks great!

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