Gin Mare

Price: ~$52 / 700 mL
Origin: [flag code=”ES” size=”16″ text=”no”] Spain
Best consumed:  
Great gin and tonic, but leave out the lime. So smooth, you can drink it neat. But make a 7:1 martini with it to really see it at its full potential. Works well in other cocktails, if you up the gin ratio just a tad. Can get lost. 
Availability: Europe, and through Master of Malt.
Website: http://www.ginmare.com/home.php?idioma=en [Warning! It makes noise! on its own. I should start subtracting a point for this kind of late 90’s website making. They’re lucky their gin is really good]
Rating: Smooth, unique, and memorable. If you like Thyme and Rosemary in your gin, you’re going to like this. If you’re not a fan of those flavors, stay clear. 
[Rating:4.5/5]

Gin MareIf you asked me, “what is the hottest place for innovation in the gin spirit category,” I would obviously reply “The United States.” But suppose you asked me, “what would be the next hottest place for innovation in gin?” I wouldn’t even hesitate to say it is definitely Spain.

The contemporary gin movement is not limited to the states. It is alive and well on the Iberian peninsula, and as we’ll see with Gin Mare, this Mediterranean gin is wholly unlike anything I think I’ve had thus far.

Tasting Notes
The nose is mild and clean, rosemary immediately visible. Herbal, but not too overpowering. A bit of juniper too. A good contemporary nose, I can tell its gin, but its clearly flashing some of its novel notes.

The taste is pleasing, initially vegetal but smooth throughout. I’ve had a couple of gins with a strong herbal profile that quickly descend into “broth” or “soup,” this remains clear. A bit of rosemary at the front, followed by some orange and juniper. The tail show a brief flash of increased warmth before trailing out with a lingering final note of Thyme. Thyme! My favorite herb. I’m loving this character here that reminds me more of cooking than it does of most spirits. Might this gin make a good accompaniment to a meal? Perhaps even an Italian pasta? Some basil in your gin to compliment the basil on your place?

Interesting and unique.

Mixing is a bit challenging I think. Thyme and lemon go naturally together [one of my favorite home made creations is Thyme lemonade], but that Thyme note doesn’t come out too strongly in a mixed cocktail. Its easily overpowered by citrus and strong flavors. So hold that lime before you put it in your gin and tonic. I think the best gin and tonic is an exceptionally clean one like Q here to allow the flavors and natural sweetness of Gin Mare to come through. Exceptionally smooth and makes a good martini, especially if you’re going to dial back on the vermouth a bit. Sadly, complex like the Negroni and Aviation [I had to leave it at that because of my limited sample size] I felt just didn’t have a whole lot to showcase this gin.

This is a hard review to write, because the flavor? I love it. But it just doesn’t stand out as strongly as you might hope. Could a further batch dial up the herbs a bit more? Perhaps, but I honestly believe that might be too much. The subtlety makes it shine. Could a higher proof allow it to have more flavor by volume in your drinks? I think this might be the key.

To make a Tom Collins that works with Gin Mare, double the gin. Its a boozier drink, but the rosemary and thyme really shines through. Garnish with a fresh sprig of basil to heighten the experience.

Overall, Herbs galore. Rosemary, Thyme and Basil are readily noticeable. But what you’re going to love about Gin Mare is its smoothness and the way that traditional gin flavors like juniper and citrus still shine. This is a unique and very enjoyable contemporary gin.

International Gin Exchange 2012 (13) >>>
Thanks to David over at Summer Fruit Cup for helping  make this tasting possible. Because the bottles are small sample bottles, this review is not as thorough as my normal gin reviews. There’s only enough for some tasting neat and no more than one normal-sized cocktail. Although I do my best to give as full of a review as possible, complete with ratings, the tasting is not as complete as I would normally want to do.

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Readers' Reviews

Post last updated by Aaron

15 thoughts on “Gin Mare

  • February 26, 2013by Michael Sperling

    I have had a bottle of Gin Mare on my shelf for six months now, because I find it too hard to drink neat and too difficult to mix in a gin and tonic. In Barcelona they serve it with 1724 Tonic, a mild tonic like the Q Tonic but a bit more herbal. It worked very well. Garnished with an olive and basil leaf.
    Great review by the way.

  • February 26, 2013by AaronPost author

    Thank you for the compliment. I’d love to find some 1724 Tonic stateside. I have heard very good things about it, and that it is an ideal pairing for some of these new contemporary Spanish gins.

  • June 10, 2013by Javier Castellanos

    And what about Fever-Tree Mediterranean Tonic, with its hints of thyme and rosemary?

  • June 10, 2013by AaronPost author

    Also, woud love to try it. It’s not for sale in the U.S. and very expensive to ship over. Have heard great things about it though!

  • August 21, 2013by Juan Carlos MJ

    From my point of view with GT Mediterranean Tonic is too many herbaceous flavors on the G&T, better with standard FT or my fav with 1724 and a twist of orange + sprig of fresh rosemary / simply a basil leaf.

    @Michael Sperling have you tried Gin Mare on cocktails? it’s superb on a red snapper or in a dry / dirty martini if you like them. For the G&T use just the cap because its the perfect measure and avoid garnishes such the typical lemon squeeze that doesn’t work with Mare.

  • December 7, 2013by Spike

    Juan Carlos……I agree with your assessment regarding Fever Tree Mediterranean and G&T’s. A bit too herbal…prefer the Indian tonic as the go-to luxury.

  • June 3, 2014by Doc

    Gin Mare at this time is an absolute must-have in my personal stock. I think that in the new generation of gin is one of the most extreme but also the most successful with that unmistakable smell of brine of olives. not to be missed in a gin and tonic with a simple f.t. or a Schweppes Heritage garnished with an olive oil and a sprig of thyme. equally interesting using it in a red snapper always accompanied by a sprig of thyme.

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  • May 19, 2015by pompeypaulo

    the best garnish for Mare I’ve had… a sliver of mango peel and cracked black pepper. Astonishingly good.

    And check out Brecon Botanical, made at the Penderyn distillery in Wales. The UK is where it’s at when it comes to gin !!

  • June 28, 2015by Scribernick

    I’m not a gin drinker – but on a recent trip to Bogota Colombia I ended up ordering a G&T made with Gin Mare after someone else in the group ordered one. I wish I had made note of the tonic brand, but clearly not your run of the mill tonic. In prep of the drink, the bartender used a good sized sprig of rosemary to rub the rim of the glass and to vigorously brush the inside of the glass. A slice of lime finished off the garnish. It was delicious and now I’m hoping to get my hands on some Gin Mare here in the U.S.

  • June 28, 2015by AaronPost author

    I wish you did too! It wasn’t by chance 1724, was it?

    But that sounds fantastic. Gin Mare is hard to find, but it is around and well worth it!

    Cheers,
    Aaron

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  • January 14, 2016by wendy

    Put this together with a sprig of rosemary, Fever Tree tonic, a fresh slice of peach…or add light peach syrup, and you have yourself a delicious drink.

  • January 25, 2016by Juan Carlos

    Hi Wendy! never tried it with peach so will definetily do the next time. Thx for the tip!

  • November 22, 2016by Jeff

    Try it with fever tree – a sliced cucumber with a potato peeler – make it wide (slice along its length as you would peel a potato) wrap it around the inside of a large red wine glass. Ice & 2x measures of gin mare & wait for it – some very faint shavings of a jalapeño on the top at the end…! Drink over the cucumber & wait for the zing…!! Better than a Bloody Mary for a hangover hair of the dog…!!!

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