Botanical: Nutmeg

Nutmeg, still wrapped in MaceNutmeg’s origin is in the volcanic Banda islands of Maluku* Indonesia. By the 10th century AD, the fruit of these distant islands made it as far as the Arabian peninsula, and in more modern times the Dutch East India Company made it’s fortune from the fruit.

The nutmeg fruit comes with a seed wrapped in red threads known as mace. The seed is the nutmeg. Growing on the  Myristica fragrans tree, it was once the most expensive spice in the world, and only available through the Dutch East India Company’s monopoly. It’s no surprise, that we see nutmegs begin to appear in elite Dutch cuisine as early as the late 15th century (including this ‘gin’ recipe from 1495).

Once a spice to show off one’s wealth, cultivation outside of Maluku has made it more affordable in modern times. But the captivation of nutmeg’s unique camphoraceous, woody, gentle spice remains.

*Those in the gin world might know these islands better by the Anglicized spelling of it as “Moluccas.”

Gins featuring Nutmeg

Diep 9 Old Genever

Diep 9 Old Genever starts from rye, wheat, and of course malted barley— all locally grown in East Flanders.  It’s

Read more

1897 Quinine Gin

If the holidays are a time for thinking truly about others first, than 1897 Quinine Gin is an apt review

Read more

Bimber London Dry Gin

Bimber, Polish. noun. Bootleg. Moonshine. Bushbrandy. Bimber Distillery might be the new kid on the block in London’s burgeoning distillation scene.

Read more

Iron Balls Gin

The first thing you notice, well aside from the name. Iron Balls. The first thing you notice is the unusual

Read more