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Gin and tonic stories (episode 4)

Ok, but when were the gin and tonic put together?

A few decades after the invention of tonic water, at the beginning of the 19th century. Our cocktail was created by the British officers of the British East India Company who, stationed in India, had brought with them a substantial supply of quinine to protect themselves from malaria.

Even though quinine was dissolved in tonic water, the bitter and unpleasant taste of the medicine made it unappetizing. It was this reason that prompted an anonymous experimenter to mix the standard ration of gin that was part of the British soldiers' equipment with the diabolical mix of quinine and tonic, adding water, sugar and lime and giving life to the gin and tonic.

I soldati Inglesi di stanza in India combattono la malaria a forza di gin tonic

British soldiers stationed in India fight malaria with gin and tonic

Even when malaria was no longer a threat and the amount of quinine in the tonic water was drastically reduced - dampening the bitter taste that still characterizes it - what was originally supposed to be a medicine became an irresistible cocktail. 

From India to the UK, the cocktail found its ideal homeland in France where, in the 1980s, it became a cult drink especially among students. From there to the conquest of the universe the step was, as we well know, very short ... 

Francoise Hardy - Gin Tonic LP

French singer Francoise Hardy dedicates an LP to Gin Tonic

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