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2021-05-26 Print

Book Release for Something & Tonic: A History of the World's Most Iconic Mixer

New cocktail book by award-winning bartender Nick Kokonas reveals how tonic shaped modern civilization and made Its way into the iconic happy hour highball, also features 60 original drink recipes


Something & Tonic: A History of the World’s Most Iconic Mixer
Nick Kokonas
Imprint: Bark to Bottle Publishing
On Sale: May 28, 2021
Price: $30.00
Pages: 213
ISBN: 978-0-57885-456-4

Chicago, Ill. - May 26, 2021 - “The ‘[fill in the blank] and tonic’ has become a cornerstone of today’s drinks world, but while our understanding of wines and spirits has grown greatly over the years, seldom has a researcher dived so deeply into the story of essential drink mixers. Something & Tonic is a necessary resource that fills in many of the gaps in our understanding of all things related to cinchona, quinine, and tonic—and the best ways to enjoy them in a glass.” - Paul Clarke, Executive Editor, Imbibe.

The expanse of western civilization was hindered by a mosquito bite. For centuries, malaria devastated the European explorers who defined the contours of our modern world map—and the indigenous people who resisted them. The cure? Quinine contained in the bark of the South American cinchona tree, whose medicinal properties were discovered around the turn of the 17th century. Over 400 years later, quinine defines the essence of tonic, the most iconic mixer in the world.

Something & Tonic: A History of the World’s Most Iconic Mixer (Bark to Bottle Publishing; Hardcover; $30.00; on sale May 28, 20211) follows the fascinating history of tonic from the jungles of the Andes mountains to the happy hour highball. Award-winning bartender Nick Kokonas takes you on a journey around the globe, revealing how tonic emerged from medical necessity to recreational tipple. Included are 60 original cocktail recipes that reveal tonic’s potential beyond the highball, plus tips, tricks, and insight into modern bar culture and cocktail making.

Over the course of his career, Kokonas has played an integral role in critically-acclaimed bars throughout his hometown, Chicago, Ill. In 2016, he became the beverage director for the now defunct restaurant The Heritage, where he created the weekly rotating cocktail that would inspire his debut book. In Chicago Tribune food writer Phil Vettel’s review of the restaurant he writes,

"Kokonas offers a tidy list of five or six cocktails, of which the most interesting is the Something and Tonic, which changes week to week. I don't know if Kokonas can sustain this for a year, but I've managed to have three versions of this drink, and so far, so good.”

Something & Tonic aims to demystify the origins of tonic water. History buffs, bartenders, and cocktail enthusiasts alike will be amazed at how integral tonic’s essence, quinine from the cinchona tree, was in the development of modern civilization. The book then reveals innovative ways to use tonic in a wide array of applications moving beyond the G&T. Available for presale now.

Contact: Nick Kokonas

For more information, visit

Contact Info
Bark to Bottle Publishing
3246 N Richmond St Apt 2
Chicago, IL 60618

Phone: 6308429066