The Genetics Of Gin: Getting Limber & Loose In The Big Smoke

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Amidst the botanical concoctions firmly rooted in what is now, London’s behemoth gin market, the G&T is no longer just a requisite for ladies at lunch. With 624 million G&Ts drank every year in the UK (and that’s disregarding the Tom Collins or Martini) the gin industry could well be the most improved pupil in the alcohol-induced class. After all, what drink lends itself so fittingly to debriefing and cocktails come 5 o’clock Friday? In light of this second coming of spirit, here’s four educational nuggets to wash down with that Indian summer of a medicine.

1. TAKE YOUR MEDS

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Gin’s classic accompaniment hails from the British Raj. Tonic water was invented in 1854, and came to the fore to make the anti-malarial quinine tolerable to the taste buds. That, allied with gin’s all-curing juniper (aiding everyone and his uncle with health problems such as hair loss, depression, wounds and poor blood circulation), sealed a marriage made in medicinal heaven.

2. GOING DUTCH

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It comes as scant surprise to learn that most of the world’s famous gins are made in the UK (many of us can barely go a sunny lunch without a cucumber-garnished goblet of mother’s ruin). It was not always thus. Originally, in fact, gin was a Dutch import; after the Thirty Years’ War in 17th-century Holland, British soldiers observed Dutch soldiers swigging from bottles of Jenever before fighting, to instil the spirit of belligerence. Hence, the term ‘Dutch courage’…

These days, the balance of power has shifted to the UK, with this country officially producing some of the best in the world. Is it any wonder then that as a nation we downed a staggering 624 million G&T’s last year alone?

3. MARY GINNY

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Nothing could add to the godlike goodness of gin than flour, sugar, butter and lemons. So whack on an apron and scaffold some flowery bunting – it’s time to take booze to the oven. G&T cake recipe.

4. HERBAL REMEDIES

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Basil plants, mint plants, tarragon, dill, it’s nothing less than ingenious to make it a gin-orientated mission to grab whatever fragrant leaves you can to add to your evening wind-down wash down. Add to boiling water, cool, freeze, add to gin, drink, and repeat. Nothing like a fragrant ice tray to make you feel like accomplished.

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