April 9th is a special day, and not just because it’s National Cherish An Antique Day (although that does seem like a pretty rowdy holiday), but because it’s also a day for fans of the magical combination of gin, tonic water, and lime to have their day in the sun. That’s right, it’s National Gin & Tonic Day, folks. If you’re not a fan of the juniper-based, botanical-infused spirit, you might not have circled this date in your planner. The rest of us, however, are already planning tonight’s happy hour.
There are few drinks more adapt at bridging the gap between winter and spring than the classic Gin & Tonic. It’s fresh, effervescent, and packed with citrus and herbal flavors. Plus, if you get tired of gin, tonic, and lime, the drink is easily adaptable to any palate. Hence the existence of the Spanish Gin Tonic — with its ingredients like cucumbers, peppers, and herbs.
Like us, bartenders celebrate this important rite of spring by mixing up their own versions of the iconic drink. And some of the masters of the cocktail were kind enough to tell us their favorite gins to do so. Check out all of their answers below.
Amir Babayoff, head bartender at Ophelia in New York City
“My favorite gin depending on the season. With spring approaching, Nolet’s silver gin would be my choice for a gin and tonic, A la Espanola style with enhancement of its natural botanicals like: Raspberries, peach and Moroccan rose. I like to throw in a few strawberry slices, rhubarb and lemon wheels.”