I don’t drink a lot of hard alcohol, fussy cocktails and mixed drinks. When I do, my glass is very often filled with a “summer see through”. The classic Gin and Tonic – which my husband Matt’s family has called the “summer see through” for as long as anyone can remember. I love gin for its complex spicy notes. Its fresh taste always reminds me of walking past an evergreen on a hot summer day. Its surprisingly refreshing for a smell that is indicative of winters by the fire.
This recipe was inspired by another classic cocktail the Singapore Sling – an “oh so sweet” sounding mix of gin, cherry brandy (or cherry liqueur), Bénédictine, pineapple juice (or grenadine) and sometimes soda. I love the idea of adding cherries to gin but I find sweet syrupy liqueurs to be overpowering. A little bit of sweet is a perfect balance – too much will overpower and you will lose the beauty of Gin’s flavours. Add a little bitter to the softer sweetness and THAT is the perfect summer cocktail.
1 ounce good quality Gin (Hendrick’s, Tanqueray or Bombay Saphire would be my first picks. They all have beautiful and complex herbal notes)
4 ounces of tonic water
If you prefer a sweeter version, add an ounce of pomegranate juice
Pit the cherries, place them in your serving glass and gently crush with a wooden pestle or long spoon. Don’t massacre them, just break them up slightly.
Add the gin, cover and let sit for some time (a few hour, if you can spare the time).
Once the cherries have marinated in the gin add the tonic water and pomegranate juice if you are using it. Stir and enjoy!
Garnish with a stemmed cherry and lime.
Yields 1 serving