Diet Fever
February 13, 2008

I don't do diets. South Beach, L.A., Atkins, juice, cabbage, vitamin...I just don't do them. That said, there was a time when I dabbled in diet tonic water because it sort of seemed to make sense. However, one cool sip of that swill with its insincere, mechanized taste, and I trashed my glass, seeing absolutely no point in adulterating my tastebuds any further.

Enter Fever-Tree. Now, you know I'm a loud and lary Fever-Tree lover. You know I've done the taste test, you know I've become quite particular about what I allow to touch my precious gins, and you know that I think Fever-Tree is the best thing to happen to alcohol since, well, alcohol. I adore Fever-Tree tonic water. I stock it at home, and before I order a simple G'n'T at a bar, I check to see if they're serving Fever-Tree tonic. If they're not, I forgo the gin and go for wine.

Recently, Fever-Tree has decided to nod to the weight-conscious and introduce the world's first all-natural, low-cal tonic. Now, when I first heard this, I shuddered. Diet tonic water? Been there, expectorated that. Seriously? If you care that much about the calories, why are you drinking alcohol in the first place? However, there are certain occasions when I love being proven wrong and this was one of those occasions. I sallied forth to taste Fever-Tree light with every intention of despising it, and yet...I actually preferred it to Fever-Tree regular!

Cripes, it didn't taste diet and, frankly, that's the most important thing for me. Taste. Yes, it's got 45% less calories than other tonic waters. Yes, it's all-natural with zero artificial sweeteners, high-fructose corn syrup, or preservatives. But how does it taste? Pretty damn fantastic. Sweetened only with fruit sugar and flavored with natural oils coaxed forth from the delicately handled peel of Sicilian lemons, Fever-Tree light was brighter, fresher, crisper, and it did my 209, my Tanqueray, my Hendrick's a slimmer solid.

I kind of feel bad about this -- listen up BevMo! -- but I think I'm going to be bypassing my usual preference of Fever-Tree reg and start stocking up on diet! Not because it's diet, but because it tastes freakishly good!

Oh, and Fever-Tree Naturally Light is supposed to be in stores in mid-March, which is soon to be wafting in on these 60 San Francisco winds, so those looking to trim up for summer can start looking for it fairly soon.

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