Boylan’s Heritage Tonic

Boylan Heritage Tonic

Notes:  All Natural Citrus, Botanicals, Cane Sugar  — Lemon, Lemongrass, & Lime — A blend of sweet, bitter and sour offer a well-rounded adult soda.

Other Tonics Tested:

Fever Tree — Notes:  Citrus, Bitter Orange, Lime, 8 Botanicals (including marigold extract)

Jack Rudy Cocktail Co. — Notes:  Sugary Sweet, Orange, Lime, Botanicals

(Listed In Order Of Interest)

Homemade (see below)

John’s Premium Tonic Syrup  (Agave, Fresh Citrus, Lemongrass, Secret Herbs and Spices)

Q Tonic  (Agave and Lemon Juice)

El Guapo Tonic Syrup  (Cane sugar, Lime, Lemon, Graapefruit, Orange, Lemongrass, Ginger, Grains Of Paradise, and Secret Herbs and Spices)

Fentimens (Pithy Citrus, Lemongrass, Juniper and Lime Leaf)
(Other Fentimens sodas have a medicinal quality, will this one?)

Hansen’s Natural (Orange, California Citrus, Sugar)

Homemade Version Of Tonic Syrup
(Kevin Ludwig – Imbibe Magazine April 2007
Adapted By PDX Food Dude)


• 4 cups of water
• 3 cups pure cane sugar
• 2 ½ -3 Tbsp quinine (powdered cinchona bark)
(original recipe calls for 3 Tablespoons)
• 6 Tbsp. powdered citric acid
• 3 limes – zested and juiced
• 3 stalks lemongrass, roughly chopped
• ¼ teaspoon kosher salt

Experiment with a combination of flavors that work for you, but don’t go overboard. Let the gin do the talking. Some recipes call for allspice, and sometimes I will throw in orange zest or whatever else catches my eye.

Make a simple syrup by bringing the sugar and water to a boil, and stirring until the sugar dissolves. Turn heat to low. Add quinine, citric acid, lemongrass, lime zest and juice. Stir and simmer for 25 minutes.

Remove from heat.  Only let the mixture cool enough so that you can work with it, as it is much more difficult to filter once it reaches room temperature and the sugar thickens.  Do a quick filter through a mesh strainer to remove the large solids.  Then, drape a double thick layer of fine cheesecloth over your strainer – keep it long, and let it trail across the counter.  Place the strainer over a bowl and start filtering by pouring the mixture through the cheesecloth.  Be patient; each pass takes a good 30 minutes.  I keep the bowl over very low heat to make sure the tonic stays warm.

As the fines plug the cheesecloth, carefully move it across your strainer and up the other side. You may need to adjust it several times during the filtration process. Repeat the process two more times, or until most of the solids are removed.

You can try your tonic now – use the recipe below, but it will be best if you let the mix settle out for a couple of days in the refrigerator, and carefully pour the clear liquid off of the top. In my experience, letting the mix ‘mellow’ for a few days smooths out the rough edges, and greatly improves the final product.
Pour your tonic into clean glass bottles, cover and store in refrigerator. It will keep at least two weeks.

To make your gin & tonic, use the following proportions:

½ oz. tonic syrup
1-½ oz. gin
Splash (little or big) of soda water from soda siphon
Ice cubes
Glass:  double rocks
Garnish:  lime twist, or drop the lime wedge in the drink


Twain’s Brewpub & Billiards

Pickled Vegetables…

Onions, Herbs, & Mustard Seeds…

White Bean Hummus & Pita

The Olivia Burger

Sweet Potato Chips

Pan-Fried Snapper, Brussel Sprouts, & Whipped Celeriac


River Sunset & Four Count

Coosa Mountain Trail Ale

Ale List For April 25+

It’s time for another visit.

Twain’s Brewpub, Billiards & Tap
211 East Trinity Place
Decatur, GA  30030
404 373 0063

Nam Phuong — Banh Xeo

Bánh Xèo With Herbs, Lettuce, & Pickled Vegetables

Street food with a moutain of herbs?  We’re in.

Bánh Xèo

Cilantro, basil, mint, tender lettuce leaves, shredded carrots, cucumber slices, and pickled daikon shreds wait to be wrapped up in tasty bundles.

Bánh Xèo
(Vietnamese Crepe With Shrimp & Pork)

It’s stuffed with bean sprouts, shrimp, and little bits of pork

Salt & Pepper Shrimp

Papaya Salad With Shrimp Crackers

It’s salad perfection… again.

Mì Quảng

This was another beautifully composed and hearty bowl of mi quang on yet another visit to the Buford Highway location.

We loved it all… again.

Nam Phuong
4051 Buford Highway NE
Atlanta, GA  30345
404 633 0776

Mitica ChocoCherries

Mitica ChocoCherries
(Handmade In Aragon, Spain)

These dark chocolate hand dipped candied cherries are divine.  Do you love a chocolate covered cherry?  But, do you think to yourself, “I wish there was significantly less sugar and syrup.”?  If so, these are for you.  The saccharine sweet syrup is completely gone.  This is all candied cherry and chocolate.  There’s no syrup in the center at all.  Imagine this.  Let the syrup and moisture of something similar to a Luxardo cherry evaporate.  Then, dip that cherry in chocolate.

Orange Delights
(Handmade In Valencia, Spain)


And, there’s roughly 5 ounces per package.

Mitica – Forever Cheese


Whole Foods

Crackers Bar, Grill, & Tiki

Conch Fritters

Fried Scallops, Oysters, Shrimp, & Hushpuppies

The seafood is all good.  Who needs the breaded fries?  We sure didn’t.

The oysters and scallops were simply out of this world.  So fresh, tender, and sweet, we could eat them all day, every day, forever.

…even if the beer and cocktails come in plastic cups.

Crackers Bar, Grill, & Tiki
502 NW 6th Street
Crystal River, FL  34428
352 795 3999

Notice:  Do Not Handle or Harass The Seahorses!

Crystal River

Scalloping, it’s what to do in Crystal River.

…when you aren’t snorkeling with manatees (November thru March), scuba diving, canoeing, or kayaking.

(Note:  By June, most (a small population remains for most of the year) of the manatees have swum on to clearer pastures.  They only swim in to Crystal River in the winter to enjoy the warm, shallow water.)

Guided Dives:

Bird’s Underwater Dive Center
(Dive training at all levels… including cavern & cave specialists)

Blue Grotto Cabins

Fire pit, check.

Small and cozy, it’s like summer camp for adults.

The mini-fridge is essential.  It’s a 20 minute drive to the nearest (and we think only) grocery store.

Blue Grotto Spring

It’s hard to see.  But, this water is gorgeously crystal clear.

Blue Grotto

Devil’s Den

Devil’s Den

Just follow the dirt road…

Welcome to Florida’s Prehistoric Underground Spring

From the top…

Walk down the fairly steep (yet sturdy) and narrow stairway that’s built for smaller feet.

Then, after a long hot day…

Who knew the occult would be this sweet?

Korean @ H Mart Food Court

Haemool Dolsot Bab
(or, Haemul Dolsot Bap)

Sizzling hot, the seafood (the weak spot) hides under the vegetables.

The perfectly crisp rice was the highlight.

Each meal comes with a portion of kimchi and sprouts.


Hae Mul Pa Jeon

Sul Lung Tang

Next time…

Incredibly Fresh Lychee ($6.99 lb)

Beautiful and delicious, these were our after dinner treat for a week.

Guatemalan Mangos (2 for .99 cents)

Very ripe and quite nice, but, these weren’t our favorite.  The round canary melon ($1.49) was a bit mediocre, too.  But, we also found an oblong-y oval (Crenshaw) melon in the same bin (also for $1.49) and it was honey sweet melon perfection.  Note to self, always stick to the Crenshaws!

Super H Mart
2550 Pleasant Hill Road
Duluth, GA  30096
678 543 4000

Sweet Rice

Green Tea Shaved Ice

Sweet green tea shaved ice hides under sweet red beans, vanilla ice cream, cubes of chewy Korean rice cakes (tteok, or ttuk, or dduk), corn flakes and almond slivers.

Some are packed and ready to go.  Or, you can choose your own assortment.

Black sesame rice donuts were our favorite of the bunch.
(…Even if the use of black sesame was a bit skimpy.)

Grab a little plate or tray and choose your rice cakes.

Pink Hearts

Sweet Rice
(Rice Cakes, Coffee, & Tea)
2180 Merchants Way
Duluth, GA 30096
770 476 9303

The El Felix

The Chips

Super thin and crisp, we couldn’t stop eating these.

Take care, you might just make a meal out of the chips and salsa.

Both were very tasty.  But, the salsa verde disappeared first.

Grapefruit Mojito

Refreshing and light, the time passes easily.

Campechana De Marisco

Gulf Shrimp, Crab, Octopus, & Avocado

Tostadas were a bit heavy and greasy.  But, who needs them?  The shrimp and crab demand our full attention.

Gulf Red Snapper

Absolutely divine,  the crispy golden bits on the outside add an airy, light crunch.  But, it was the perfectly cooked interior that stole the show.  So silky tender, delicate and moist, perfection can be the only word for this beautiful fish.

The Revolver & Vampire Weekend

Linger and enjoy.

The El Felix
1130 Avalon Blvd
Suite 1030
Alpharetta, GA 30009
678 248 5239

Com Mai

Gỏi Xoài
(Green Mango & Dried Shrimp Salad)

This lightly dressed salad lets the unique taste and texture of green mango shine.

Beautifully bitingly fresh, this is just the thing we want to eat as the temperature rises.

Shaking Beef

Tender bites, all.

Chinese Style Sausage & Fried Egg

It’s just what we were craving.

Com Mai Vietnamese Cuisine
1455 Pleasant Hill Road
Lawrenceville, GA  30044
770 564 2292