This Is Queen Elizabeth's Favorite Cocktail

Will you ever live in a castle? As much as you might deserve it, the answer is probably "no." But that doesn't mean you can't drink like a queen.

We're quite accustomed to seeing Queen Elizabeth II holding up a glass of champagne in a toast at one or another gathering of world leaders, but what is Her Royal Highness's drink of choice when the cameras aren't around (via Vanity Fair)?

First, let's address a rumor about just how much the highest-ranking member of the royal family imbibes. In 2017, there was some gossip about how Her Majesty drank up to four cocktails a day. That's simply not true, according to the Queen's former chef Darren McGrady, who told CNN the boozy gossip started when a tabloid misquoted him about the queen's drinking habits. In fact, McGrady clarifies, the queen drinks only once in a while.

So with that cleared up, what is Elizabeth's cocktail of choice? Gin and Dubonnet. What's that? We're about to tell you.

What's in a gin and Dubonnet?

Simply put, Queen Elizabeth II's favorite, gin and Dubonnet, is a wine cocktail. Dubonnet, a wine aperitif, has a fascinating backstory. Available in red or white varieties, it is fortified with herbs, spices, and quinine. That last ingredient, quinine, is the crucial one. The purpose of the beverage, created by a Parisian chemist named Sir Joseph Dubonnet in 1846, was to get French soldiers stationed in North Africa to drink quinine. Why? Because quinine, a bitter, medicinal compound made from cinchona tree bark, fights malaria, a deadly disease that was prevalent on the continent at the time the French were stationed around the world (via Taste Atlas, Healthline).

Although Dubonnet has been dismissed as an "old lady's" drink (via Macleans), mixed with gin, Dubonnet makes a tasty cocktail. Gin and Dubonnet, essentially two parts Dubonnet, one part gin, and a lemon twist, is a cocktail you might want to make at home.  Elle Talk describes the concoction as a bit sweet and slightly herbal with an "enjoyable smooth bitterness."

Don't worry that this old Parisian aperitif is hard to find. The Tasting Table says Dubonnet is available at your local liquor store.