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Syrup Spotlight: Premium Tonic Syrup

by Chris Harrison 2 min read

A note from Liber & Co.:

We’ve been getting a lot of interest in our Premium Tonic Syrup lately. There has been a lot of news around using hydroxychloroquine (HCL) and chloroquine, anti-malaria drugs, in the treatment of COVID-19. Quinine, an ingredient in our Premium Tonic Syrup and most tonic waters, is also an anti-malaria drug that's closely related to HCL.

Clinical studies are investigating the efficacy of HCL with respect to COVID-19, however we want stress that the quinine used in our Premium Tonic Syrup is used only for its flavor and should not be consumed in an attempt to prevent or treat any disease.

What we are sure of is that our Premium Tonic Syrup is great a making delicious gin and tonics, and we hope this blog post whets your appetite and that you grab a bottle!

Person making Gin and Tonic on indoor barFrom Benedictine to the Corpse Reviver, the origin stories of many bar favorites have a medicinal bent, and tonic is no exception. Tonic water was born as a prophylactic against malaria for troops of the colonizing British empire. A primary ingredient is the bark of the cinchona tree which contains quinine, an effective agent in the treatment of malaria. The Spanish learned about its effects from the indigenous peoples of Peru and eventually the use of cinchona and quinine spread across Europe and its empires. The cinchona tree was introduced by the British to India and Sri Lanka in the late 19th century. The quinine powder derived from cinchona is extremely bitter, so it was mixed with local botanicals, sugar, and soda water - creating tonic water. British troops were already given a ration of gin and mixed it with tonic water to create the G&T. 

Cinchona trees at base of volcanoToday’s tonic has much lower levels of quinine, and a much more pleasant taste. A previous iteration of our tonic syrup was actually one of our first products. We were inspired by seeing tonic syrups at craft cocktail bars. These tonic syrups made for more delicious and more interesting drinks. A tonic syrup also makes a lot more sense for the home bartender, who probably already has soda water on hand and might usually waste half a bottle of tonic water, if only making one or two cocktails.

We wanted our Premium Tonic Syrup to perfectly complement premium dry gins. We opted for natural quinine derived from cinchona trees that grow at the foot of Guatemala’s Volcán Tajumulco, for that sharp, bitter note. Next, we added a mix of citrus oils for a zesty, aromatic note and slight acidity and finally, round out the flavor with pure cane sugar. 

Highball cocktail on outdoor tableTry our Premium Tonic Syrup as intended, in a classic Gin & Tonic. Mix in an apertivo for a light and refreshing cocktail, in the Tonico Di Corte. Or try a tiki inspired mocktail with our Miraflores recipe. If you’re up for something bolder, try the GT Turbo sour.

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