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#96015 - Sat Mar 11 2000 07:27 PM Useful Fact: Tonic Water
JoJo2 Offline
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Registered: Fri Nov 19 1999
Posts: 17656
Loc: San Diego California USA 
WHAT IS QUININE AND WHY IS IT IN TONIC WATER?

Quinine is a drug that comes from the bark of the cinchona tree, which grows in the rain forest. It was first brought to the attention of Europeans when the Spanish heard about the medicinal properties of the "fever tree" from the natives of South America. The drug is used to cure malaria and was so successful that a boatload was shipped back to Europe in 1640 and the Jesuits began using it in their missionary work. Before synthetics came along to offer a substitute, Quinine was the only effective treatment for malaria for 300 years.

Tonic water is a byproduct of the British colonization. They used Quinine to help combat fever, but in order to make it palatable, they mixed it with gin and lemon or lime. Over time, they developed a taste for the mixture (much like our GIs did for instant coffee).

By the way, the amount of quinine in tonic water (about 20 milligrams) is nowhere near the amount necessary to treat malaria (at least 1800 milligrams a day).


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#96016 - Sun Mar 12 2000 11:40 AM Re: Useful Fact: Tonic Water
sue943 Offline

Administrator

Registered: Sun Dec 19 1999
Posts: 35883
Loc: Jersey Channel Islands        
Gin and tonic tastes disgusting

I tried to get used to the taste many years ago, shut myself in a hotel room with a glass of ice and the mini-bar, struggled for four evenings until I could drink the stuff without pulling a face. Bravely soldiered on for several years, forcing the mixture down my throat until one day I decided that lemonade tasted far better and looked the same

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From over the pond....

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#96017 - Sun Mar 12 2000 03:13 PM Re: Useful Fact: Tonic Water
JoJo2 Offline
Star Poster

Registered: Fri Nov 19 1999
Posts: 17656
Loc: San Diego California USA 
Yes I think that you must acquire a taste for gin and tonic. I happen to like it, but I remember a time when it made me shiver with discust. Now I have always liked lemonaide, I will have to try it some day.

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