Take your gin & tonic to the next level in Stockholm
Anyone who still thinks a gin & tonicis a slap-dash thrown together drink made of boring gin, half flat tonic and garnished with a slice of dry lemon, ought to think again. Bars are making their own tonic today, sourcing their own gin from a neighboring distillery and using carefully selected raw ingredients as garnish.
A few years ago, the drink even got its own spotlight in Sweden in the form of Sweden’s Best Gin & Tonic Competition. Naming the person who can mix the best version of this classic drink is now an annual event. One member of the competition jury is Mathin Lundgren:
“The winner in 2018 was Mihail Mihaylov, who served a gin & tonic that was something completely different and yet faithful to the original. It was incredibly inspiring,” says Lundgren.
In addition to sitting on the jury, Lundgren has also written a cocktail bible, “Barmästarens manual : drinkar & snacks från grunden”. Not many people can judge whether or not a gin & tonic is extraordinary with the same degree of certainty. We there asked him where anyone looking for a gin & tonic with that little bit extra, should go in Stockholm. Here are his recommendations:
Everything is focused on the choice of gin and its tonic
Bar Agrikultur, which can boast a Bib Gourmand in the Guide Michelin, calls itself a mini restaurant and gin bar. Here, the focus is on smaller dishes of superb food that are made to share. And naturally, good gin & tonic. They serve three seasonally flavored, specially made for them gins from the nearby Stockholms Bränneri distillery. When it comes to presentation, they’ve scaled down and have chosen to serve gin & tonics with nothing more than ice and Fever-Tree tonic, without any garnish. They do this to ensure that the flavors from their gin together with the tonic, are what captures all your attention.
Skånegatan 79, Stockholm
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The world’s best gin & tonic, with a twist
This classic, international five-star hotel bar has a broad selection of both gins and different tonic waters. Take a seat in one of the comfortable sofas and enjoy the atmosphere together with top class service. Then, you can decide whether to order gin & tonic in line with your usual preferences or to try one with a modern twist. In which case, you can order their version of the drink with the humble title “The World’s Best Gin & Tonic”. The drink is mixed with Hernö gin, coffee syrup, lemon juice and tonic. It’s best described as a cross between a gin & tonic and an espresso martini a la Tom Collins.
Grand Hotel Södra Blasieholmshamnen 8, Stockholm
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The 2018 winner of Sweden’s Best Gin & Tonic works here
Behind the bar at Miss Clara, you’ll find the winner of Sweden’s Best Gin & Tonic in 2018, Mihail Mihaylov. Here, it’s pretty much mandatory to go with the flow and order the winning version, Electric GT. The Electric GT is mixed with gin from Stockholms Bränneri, Schweppes Pink Pepper Premium Tonic, smoked grapefruit, rosemary and topped with a Szechuan Button to give it an electric buzz.
Sveavägen 48, Stockholm
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Homemade tonic syrup in Gamla Stan
Pharmarium is, as the name suggests, a pharmacy and alchemist inspired bar. This treasure is located inside what was once the first pharmacy in Sweden dating back to 1575. Their Gin & House Tonic is based on the bar’s in-house produced tonic-syrup that goes under the name Enhanced Tonic Syrup. It’s mixed with a generous slug of Bombay Sapphire gin and served in a properly chilled glass with large, round ice balls. If you’re converted on the spot, you can buy their tonic-syrup at the bar to take home with you.
Stortorget 7, Stockholm
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An alcohol-free gin & tonic
In the round bar in Teatergrillen, you’ll find an extensive choice of classic cocktails with a big focus on the little details. Their gin & tonic is made with one part Plymouth Gin, two parts Three Cents tonic and finished with a freshly squeezed lemon wedge on top, served in a classic, carefully chosen, highball glass.They also serve an alcohol-free gin & tonic, namely a Cucumber Tonic. The inspiration behind this is the incredibly popular Hendricks Gin Tonic. A Cucumber Tonic is mixed with cucumber syrup and Three Cents Tonic and served in a large wine glass with a touch of orange.
Nybrogatan 3, Stockholm
Order a gin & tonic at one of the World’s 50 Best Bars
Tjoget is the only Swedish bar on the prestigious list of the World’s 50 Best Bars, ranking an honorable 32nd. At Tjoget, you’ll not only find a bar, but also a restaurant, beer café and wine bodega. In terms of flavors, the inspiration in the bar comes from southern Europe, north Africa, the Middle East and beyond. Here, you can order a genuine classic gin & tonic with Fords Gin, Schweppes Premium Tonic and garnished with your own choice of lemon. Every December, the bar also has an entire gin & tonic section on its drinks list.
Hornsbruksgatan 24, Stockholm
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Published: March 14, 2019