Club Soda vs Tonic Water
Bubbly, fizzy water is in itself a source of attraction for people in all parts of the world and is used for various purposes. Club soda and tonic water are two such forms of water that cause confusion in the minds of people because of their similarities. This article attempts to take a closer look at these two types of carbonated water on the basis of their features to clear all doubts.
Club soda is water that has carbon dioxide added to it at high pressure. Sometimes, sodium salts are also added to this water. The process that is used to add carbon dioxide to water is called carbonation that leads to effervescence in water. This carbon dioxide, added in very low concentrations (0.2% to 1.0%) to water forms carbonic acid that makes the water sour. To control this sour flavor, sodium or potassium salts are added to this carbonated water.
Tonic water is also carbonated water, implying addition of carbon dioxide to water. However, why it is called tonic is because of the fact that it always contains quinine. The addition of quinine was a way to ward off malaria in a country like India by British administrators, and today addition of quinine is mostly symbolic, though some amount of quinine is still added to give the water its distinct bitter taste. Once this bitter taste (acidic) has been compensated, commonly with corn syrup, tonic water makes refreshing drinks with gin and mineral water. In fact, we hear names like gin tonic and vodka tonic only because of using tonic water with these alcoholic beverages.
What is the difference between Club Soda and Tonic Water?
• It is clear then that both club soda and tonic water are carbonated water, though there are differences in ingredients.
• While both are carbonated, tonic water always contains small amounts of quinine, while club soda contains small amounts of sodium or potassium salts.
• While quinine was added earlier to make the water a sort of medicine to ward off malaria in British India, addition of quinine stile continues albeit in very small quantities.