Crystal’s Gin & Tonic Selection Takes a Classic to the Next Level
Just because a cocktail is a time-honored favorite doesn’t mean it can’t get a fresh makeover every now and then. Crystal’s mixologists and barkeepers gave the Gin and Tonic just that recently, when this singular go-to choice of sophisticated sippers became 19 distinct versions of itself, offering creative and delicious variations for guests to try. Flavor combos like lavender and lemon, grapefruit and tarragon, chili lime and coriander, and today’s featured favorite: strawberry and black pepper.
Crystal experts were inspired to take these liberties with the steadfast drink by the trend of “GinTonica” – the Spanish style freedom to dream up innovative new recipes using the freshest ingredients and garnishes. This “new style” Gin & Tonic was born on the Iberian Peninsula and quickly caught on across Europe, replacing the ice and slice of lemon in a highball glass with different liquors, spices and a Spanish-style “copa” glass. An array of gins is used depending on how they complement the herbs, botanicals and other ingredients, including some options with Seedlip Garden & Seedlip Spice, the world’s first non-alcoholic spirits – and excellent drink for when you’re not drinking.
Ross Martin, Crystal’s corporate beverage manager, took inspiration for today’s featured cocktail while touring the Martin Miller’s facility, as the gin producer featured a strawberry and black pepper twist as the cocktail of that day. Martin Miller’s Gin is distilled in England, then sent to the remote Icelandic village of Borgarnes, where glacial meltwater – which has been filtered for around 800 years through the surrounding mountains – is added. This marriage of English distillation and Icelandic glacial water dilutes the spirit down to its 80-proof bottling strength.
And when fresh strawberries and black peppercorns are added, the flavor simply bursts at first sip. Try the recipe below and imagine your next Crystal voyage to England and Iceland (or wherever else you fancy, as this drink is served throughout Crystal ships).
Strawberry & Black Pepper Gin & Tonic
2 oz. Martin Miller’s Gin
4 oz. Fever Tree Indian Tonic Water
2 Fresh strawberries
Slice the strawberries into quarters and drop into a glass with ice, along with black peppercorns. Add Martin Miller’s gin, stir once to mix with the ice then top up with tonic water. Add a twist of fresh pepper from a grinder and place a strawberry on the rim of the glass.
For best results a large balloon glass or large red wine glass works best but can made in a highball also.
Explore England, Iceland and the surrounding isles on dozens of sailings in 2021, 2022 and 2023 aboard Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity.
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