Whenever I dive into making new recipes around here, I have several books I consult to get ideas for combining flavors and spices. One is The Flavor Bible, and the other is a more newly acquired book called The Spice Companion, which I highly recommend. It was through this book, and some research on this classic cocktail recipe, that I made a little discovery: We have been doing Gin & Tonics all wrong.
The more you understand flavor profiles, the better when it comes to cocktails. I recently found out that mango happens to be a flavor that brings out the juniper flavor commonly used in gin. Funny enough, I never really liked limes in my Gin & Tonic, so this suggestion of a different garnish was a happy discovery for me!
In the Spice Companion book, black pepper is also noted as pairing well with juniper, as well as tarragon. So, you can guess what our garnish choice was for this cocktail...
Gin & Tonic with Mango // serves 2
- 4oz gin
- tonic water
- 2 thick slices of mango
- ground black pepper
- 2 sprigs of tarragon
I don't think I need to tell you how to make this one, but I will. Pour 2 oz. of gin over ice, top with tonic, and garnish with sliced, ripe mango, a dash of ground pepper, and tarragon sprig.
The only part that's up to you is if you want to muddle the mango a bit for more flavor! I liked the addition of a little extra fruit in mine. And, hey, what do you know? Saturday is National Gin Day (who comes up with this stuff?), so now might just be the best time to take this new way to enjoy your G&T for a test drive!