The best tonic water recipe!

Cocktail Curations Conversation on making the best tonic water

Tonic Water! It adds so much to a cocktail—bitter, sweet, sour, salt—all packed in one neat little bottle.

Nicole at Cocktail Curations makes some of the best tonic water variations we’ve ever had. She says that, as long as you have all the essential ingredients, you can add any other flavors you dream of to make it unique and beautiful. The basic essential ingredients to any tonic are: quinine, a sweetening agent, citric acid, salt and, of course, a form of liquid.

They curate their tonic flavors the way they cook. We choose interesting flavors that balance one another and use fresh produce, citrus, herbs, and spices.

At events, tonic bars are a crowd pleaser because they give guests the opportunity to decide on their spirit preference, alcohol ratios, tonic flavors, sweetness level and garnish. It’s just pure joy and creativity in a glass – with or without the alcohol.

Cocktail Curations Basil Fennel Tonic Recipe


3 Cups White Sugar

5 Cups Water

2 tbsp cinchona bark (cut and sifted)

1 tbsp salt

2 tbsp fennel

1 tsp citric aid

Remove from heat and strain through a fine mesh

3 oz fresh basil

*You can purchase chichona bark online. Make sure they are sifted and cut bark pieces.

Bring all ingredients to a boil in a 6-quart stock pot and reduce to a simmer for 10 minutes.

Remove from heat and strain through a fine mesh sieve and cool.

After the tonic is cool enough to handle, funnel into bottles or storage container of your choice and store in the fridge

One way to use your tonic is in the classic Gin and Tonic. Mix 2 oz. gin with 2 oz. tonic syrup in a glass and top with sparkling water. Garnish with beautiful fresh or dehydrated fruits and herbs.

Alternatively, you can also shake it up the tonic syrup with your spirit of choice and a squeeze of fresh lime juice.