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Gin is a liquor that is oftentimes under appreciated, misunderstood, and downright disrespected among social drinkers from all walks of life. Perhaps the most cultured of all the spirits, this drink has an expansive history dating back to the 17th century, and even earlier on some accounts. Originally utilized as a medication, it was augmented with juniper berries to not only increase its health benefits, but also its palatability. Ever since, innovators and mixologists alike have flocked to the possibilities that gin offers purveyors of taste. Indeed, the best gins today are almost all derivatives of a "cultured" growth, regardless of its sketchy history with the sailors, wretches, and prostitutes of the English docks. This growth has yielded itself to the evolution of versatility, making premium gins a staple in eloquently prepared classic cocktails, as well as simple after-dinner drinks. With such a range of possibilities, its hard to snuff gin as a top contender among other liquors; and if you're already well-versed in the language of gin, you know you want to be making sure your drinking the best gin you possibly can be whenever you are drinking.
A German-based gin from the black forest area, Monkey 47 claims a, you guessed it, 47 percent alcohol by volume (ABV) rating. Now, since you're on a hot streak, care to guess how many botanicals this particular brand of gin contains? That's right! Monkey 47 contains 47 botanicals, making it one of the more complicated gins available to drink. Leading taste testers recommend this brand of gin be prepared in a highball glass with ice and ginger ale, no garnish necessary.
Tanqueary No. Ten
For those of you drinking gin when you frequent nightclubs or dive bars, you know that, immediately next to the house drink the bartender does grab, is a familiar green bottle labeled, "Tanqueary," in a simplistic, cursive font. Thankfully, Tanqueary No. Ten is this Tanqueary's older, more mature brother who has traveled to six continents and has a diversified portfolio. One in the set of a gin/tonic love affair, Tanqueary No. Ten has a variety of citrusy botanicals, comes in at 41.1 percent ABV, and is best served with a slice of grapefruit, accenting the quinine in tonic water in a bittersweet way that gin drinkers love to love.
A handful of the world's best gins come straight from the top of the world. In fact, Caorunn (pronounced ka-roon) comes from the Gaelic language, directly translating to the word for rowanberry. To the surprise of no one, rowanberry, plus another ten botanicals, are the key ingredients to making this four-time distilled Scottish gin what it is. Always handcrafted in small batches, you can enjoy this 41.8 percent ABV gin with tonic, ice, and slices of a red apple. It's the perfect autumn drink.
This gin is made with a the mash-up of standard gin ingredients, navy strength, hand-peeled orange peels, and heart, making it a proud product of the U-S-of-A! Each batch of this American gin contains 40 percent ABV, a mouthful of citrusy, spicy refreshment, and is displayed in a classic, pre-Prohibition styled bottle. Coming in as an underdog, this unassuming spirit is one of the most underrated gins around. I can't imagine that knowing what this is named after though, you would expect anything less but the best.
Bloom London Dry Gin
London and gin go together the way London and rain do. Have no fear though, this variance of London dry gins won't leave you reaching for a your coat as you're running from the pub (looking at you, Beefeater). Bloom London Dry Gin is simplistic in appearance and distillation, utilizing only three known botanicals. Slice up some strawberries to compliment the honeysuckle, chamomile, and pomelo, and serve with tonic over ice. Sipping this drink is a fantastic reminder to enjoy the simple things in life.
After watching the show Empress 1908 performs, you'll be left wondering what gin isn't capable of. This brand is infused with butterfly pea blossom, tinting the spirit a wonderfully deep indigo/blue color, and making this gin unlike the majority of other brands on the market. Served with club soda and ice will keep your drink subdued and cool, dry style. Served with tonic and citrus will transform your tom collins pretty in pink, making it a cocktail you should definitely drink before noon.
The only way to ensure your groove will go totally unmatched on the dance floor is a few drinks with a Bombay base. Indeed, Bombay Sapphire is an excellent gin that has an exquisite taste due to its vapor infusion distillation process. Letting several botanicals sit independently from the heated, vaporous spirit, all the aromatic flavors meld together to form a tantalizing concoction that is served well with a spritz of club soda and a lime garnish.
Another highly-acclaimed Scottish gin, Hendrick's is a staple in many a cocktail recipe. The distinctive taste Hendrick's is renowned for is directly related to the extra added botanicals in its specific recipe: Bulgarian rose petals and cucumbers. As the dual stills produce separate spirits that form together in 500 liter batches, this 44 percent ABV gin is sure to please. Just be sure not to over-garnish with cucumber slices, so as not to lose the authenticity of the gin flavor within the mix.
Portobello Road No. 171
Another London gin and another grapefruit garnish, Portobello Road No. 171 is a gin that will have your senses traveling back to ye olde London town before you even take your first sip. With 42 percent ABV, and staple botanicals like angelica root and orris root, you can just as easily lose the fruit and enjoy this dry style. Fancy a taste-testing experience? You can travel down Portobello Road in London, England and set up shop at their distillery "Ginstitute" for a truly immersive gin-drinking experience.
Mombasa Club gin is another American-made gin, and one of the best gins you can use within the most delicious gin cocktail recipes everyone should know. Whether you're mixing up a variant or standard collins drink, a martini, a gimlet, or a more complex-tasting cocktail like an aviation or negroni, Mombasa Club provides you with the well-balanced, slightly sweet, herbal tones that gin lovers expect.