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Cold Brew & Tonic

Normally, we don't reach for tonic when we want a cocktail. The old G&T may be a popular choice, but we think it's because people don't know what else to make with gin. It's a shame because many of the best classic cocktails call for gin—not vodka—not only because vodka was unknown in the pre-prohibition era, but because gin brings something extra to a cocktail that simply isn't there otherwise—and we don't mean juniper. It may be a requirement in gin, but not all brands choose to emphasize juniper flavor, allowing other botanicals, citrus and even spice to play the center role. Yet, even with strong, piney examples, gin is transformed by other ingredients in a way that can be hard to explain to people who think they are gin-averse. But tasting is believing.

On a recent trip to Minnesota to visit some of our former haunts, we happened

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How to make Tonic Water

I was never a Gin & Tonic fan, but all of that changed last year when I read Jeffrey Morgenthaler's post about making tonic from scratch. Of course, his wasn't the first recipe to gain widespread attention. The resurgence of craft tonic is credited to Kevin Ludwig of Portland, Oregon whose recipe even appeared in the March/April 2007 issue of Imbibe Magazine. Having basically skipped over that recipe back then, I considered it an ingredient best left to gin drinkers, or someone who was more interested. Finally, after reading more about it and seeing craft tonic added to a cocktail I really enjoyed, I decided to give it a try.

Why make something that already exists? When I first saw the Imbibe article, I was asking myself all sorts of questions. Can't you simply buy tonic water at the store? It's cheap enough, it's crystal clear, and

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