What is Gin and Tonic?

It is a cocktail of Gin, tonic water and perhaps a garnish of fruit like lime or lemon. The cocktail was introduced by the army of the British East India Company. In India and other tropical regions, malaria was a persistent problem. In the 1700s, Scottish doctor George Cleghorn studied how quinine, a traditional cure for malaria, could be used to prevent the disease. The quinine was drunk in tonic water; however, the bitter taste was unpleasant. British officers in India in the early 19 Century took to adding a mixture of water, sugar, lime, and gin to the quinine to make the drink more palatable, thus ‘Gin and Tonic’ was born. Soldiers in India were already given a gin ration, and the sweet concoction made sense. Since it is no longer used as an antimalarial, tonic water today contains much less quinine, is usually sweetened, and is consequently much less bitter.

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