Spring is here: Salt & Silver on twisted Gin & Tonics

(c) Tanqueray

Sponsored by Tanqueray

Gin and Tonic is rightfully one of the most popular drinks around: its concept is simple and straightforward, and can easily be upgraded by adding one or three ingredients. However, I think it should always be based on a high quality gin with distinct botanical notes. Tanqueray was launched in 1830, and is still produced after a fiercely guarded recipe. Its key botanicals are juniper, coriander, angelica root and liquorice, with a strong juniper note. In order to explore the possibilities of G&T, Jo and Cosy, the two creatives behind Hamburg’s uber-popular food pop-up Salt & Silver, traveled country. Inspired by Charles Tanqueray’s six years of developing the perfect London Dry Gin, they joined forces with local chefs and bartenders to reinvent the classic drink and pair it with locally inspired dishes. In Munich, beer liqueur and sweet mustard were used to make a real Bavarian version, in Hamburg, Paola Labansat added grapes and citrus thyme, which was served with ceviche, fish tacos, and basil ice cream. Read on to find out how Berlin did in this challenge and get some inspiration for your next G&T creation…

Continuing the original passion for experimenting with flavours and travelling the world to find the perfect balance, Tanqueray and Salt&Silver initiated an exploration under the motto “It’s what you put in it”. I was interested in how they experienced the local differences, the many varieties of G&T, and how to find the perfect match for your dinner. Here’s what they found out:

G&T is such a popular aperitif, why do you guys think that is so? And which kind of food does it compliment the best?
Salt&Silver: It’s because it’s such a versatile drink, you can find a version for almost kitchen style. If you add rosemary and lemon, it’s great with Italian food, or you choose fresh jalapeño and cilantro and serve it with Mexican tacos. There’s no situation a G&T doesn’t go well with.

You traveled all of Germany with your drinks and food, and created special dishes for special G&Ts – did you notice any local preferences? Do people in Berlin enjoy their G&T in the club while in Munich it’s rather sipped as a sun downer on a roof terrace?
Salt&Silver: Every region certainly has its own character, but the G&T is an allround talent, so whether you have it in the club or on a terrace doesn’t matter. It seems more a matter of personal taste, people had their very own ideas how they like this drink.

And what’s your personal favourite?
Salt&Silver: When it comes to G&T, we’re polyamorous. If it’s a surprising and well done variation, we’ll allow it onto our vast list of favourites. Even to us, the versatility of gin is astonishing. We love anything citrus, so the Tanquerey Rangpur with its distinctive and original Rangpur lime flavour really amazed us.

And how did Berlin respond to this challenge, the city where every night a trillion G&T’s are consumed? Bartender Atalay Aktaş created the Hometown Glory: 5 cl Tanqueray London Dry, caramelised limes (with cinnamon and orange liqueur), top with tonic water. To create food fitting this unusual drink, Salt&Silver invited Victoria Eliasdottir, who served baked beetroot with Danish rye bread, horseradish and lavender, as well as a smoked trout with grapefruit, dill and kaki. A food and drinks pairing that’s playing with the botanical notes of the drink, and pays homage to the local produce while taking in inspiration from around the world. Just like Charles Tanqueray would’ve done it.

Watch the video to find out how to make Aktaş’ drink:

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