Wrapping up the Great Gin Experiment
I started this experimentation with Gins back in January of 2017. Before that I read up a few books on the history of gin and the intricacies of the production process. I had figured that I would finish up my research with about 15 gins in a year. I had clearly underestimated the different nuances that you can get in a wide variety of gins. As a result, it took me a year and a half to go thru 42 different gins.
In the process, I learnt a lot about how the monks in south Netherlands / north Belgium created gin for medicinal purposes by adding juniper to the distillation process, how gin was preceded by Old Tom and even that was preceded by Genever, how gin became the scourge of London at one point of time, how London Dry gin does not have to be from London.
Over that time frame, I got some great recommendations of new gins from friends like Irene and Neil, got some gifted by other friends like Julio and got some additional tips from experts like Garrett. Collected those 42 bottles from 15 different countries. Some of the more famous ones did not sit well with me – but found some great ones in labels I had never heard of.
The best part was doing the research on a particular label before trying it out and visiting a few of those distilleries.
The inevitable question will come – what is the best gin I liked. I cannot honestly say that I have a favorite. Sharmila and I always go for a Hendricks, so that does not count. Frankly, I have already forgotten the taste of a few more. But I can certainly recommend Gunpowder from Ireland, Malfy from Italy, Ungava from Canada, Barr Hill from Vermont, Wint and Lila from Spain and Tanquerray Rangpur from London.