It seems the weather gods have finally started to feel ashamed of the way they treated us this summer. And really, they should. Making the summer of the Jubilee, the Olympics, and our first season here one of the coldest, wettest, and most miserable on record? Not cool, weather gods.

But August has been a bit different, for the most part. There have actually been sunny warm days. I’ve been able to put my jumpers and cardigans aside and put on those cute sundresses I brought from the States! This weekend, temperatures are set to hit 31 degrees C (which is hot, quite hot) in some parts of the country. We’re looking at about 21-24 up here in Edinburgh, which is just fine by us. Warm enough to be pleasant without being unbearably steamy. Still, I’m sure that plenty of people will be reaching for the Pimm’s or that other hot weather standby, the gin and tonic.

The classic G+T actually has an interesting history to it: it was originally introduced by the army of the British East India Company in India in the early 19th century. See, the British soldiers and colonists got down to India and realized there were bugs there. Specifically, malaria-toting mosquitoes. Quinine was an effective treatment for the disease, but its bitter taste made it unpalatable. So, they did what any sensible person would do: added booze. Enough gin and you won’t remember what flavour means anyway. They also used to add sugar and lime to the quinine and gin. Nowadays, tonic water has much less quinine, so it’s less bitter, but we still cling to that lovely gin and tonic (or vodka tonic, which we can now enjoy because we’re all kind of friends with Russia again). Sit back, enjoy the lovely weather, and treat yourself to a tipple!

Gin and Tonic

2 oz gin

5 oz tonic water

1 lime wedge

1 tsp lime juice (optional)

Pour gin, tonic water, and optional lime juice into a highball glass over ice. Stir well and garnish with a lime wedge.

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