On my recent trip to Barcelona I was struck by the Spanish fascination with gin and was patriotically gleeful to see a strong showing of British favourites in every bar – Tanqueray, Sipsmith, Hendricks and Fever Tree tonics, alongside the home-grown Gin Mare.
The gin tonic reigns supreme in Spain. But it is not served in the highball/Collins glass we’re used to in the UK, but a copa de balon – a big bowled, long stemmed glass. The Spanish don’t scrimp on the ice nor the gin for that matter, they are also pretty good at intricate garnishes too, which are more complex than a wedge of lime (my default garnish).
So I’m back home and the sun is shining and it is perfect G&T weather, in order to replicate my Spanish gin experience I needed the right glass but couldn’t find it on the high street. Fortuitously, I receive an email on behalf of Alexander & James, a new shopping site backed by Diageo which focuses on premium Diageo spirits and gift sets with loads of gorgeous glassware and I so road test a Tanqueray Copa gift set.
I am already familiar with Tanqueray, it’s a classy Juniper heavy gin which I benchmark most other Juniper style gins against, and I’m keen to see the Copa glasses in action, wondering whether they will still hold the same magic back home.
The gift set comes beautifully wrapped in individual wine red boxes lined with black acoustic foam, for safe transit and stylish presentation. The Tanqueray Copa is an elegant, indulgent way to enjoy a large gin & tonic Spanish-style and would make a cracking gift for a gin lover.
So why drink your gin and tonic in a copa. According to Spanish bartenders, a large bowled glass opens up the drink and allows the ice, tonic, gin and garnish to marry more elegantly. Plus a long stemmed glass, so long as you hold it by the stem, means your gin & tonic stays ice cold and isn’t warmed by your hands.
Spain is bang on trend in the UK right now, so expect to see copa glasses in increasing numbers of bars before long – London Gin Club at the Star at Night has been serving Gin Tonics in Copa since it launched last March. More will surely follow…