Wine might be the liquid that runs in our veins, but we're partial to the odd soft drink too, and we were frankly blown away by these beautiful South African tonic essences. These are made to be mixed with sparkling water, to be enjoyed as a delish soft drink, or with gin or made into a cocktail. The floral essence is made with lavender, chamomile and leaves from the rose-scented Pelagornium, an indigenous plant found in the cooler mountainous areas of the Cape. Exotic, peachy, with musky, violetty notes, dried ginger and lemon peel. A floral gin is recommended with it, lighter on the juniper, if you are so inclined to add gin!
South African born Jean-Bapstiste Christini was first lured into making botanical infused spirits after a stint studying and working in France. Having always been fascinated by perfumes and distilling, he first made a gin, and of course, had to make a truly South African tonic to go with it. What was most important for Tista was terroir, and to tell the story of South Africa's floral kingdom, its numerous indigenous plants, or fynbos, and the Cape’s botanical and spice-infused history through his drinks. We talk a lot about terroir with vines and wine, but as Tista said, "with wine, we try to express the notion of terroir, but we are taking an introduced, European species and plugging it into our soil. It is little bit like trying to tell South Africa’s story with one language." With the numerous indigenous plants found in the Western Cape, this is a truly South African product. The name of the brand Symmetry comes from the balance and structure one finds in nature. Why concentrates you may ask? To limit packaging and to be able to bottle the drinks without preservatives or sulphites too. Produced in the true concentrated form, made from whole botanicals with minimal sugar, after opening, please do keep in the fridge and consume within 6 weeks. Serve in a 1:3 ratio to taste with sparkling water, and if adding spirit, add the same amount as essence. Tista recommends a floral tonic to go with the floral essence - Hendricks is a good choice. Find out more at www.geometricdrinks.co.za.