Articles Tagged: aged gin

Gin Reviews

Euphrosine Gin #9 Barrel Finished Reserve

Euphrosine-Aged

Atelier Vie takes their much-awarded Euphrosine #9 Gin [review coming very soon] and rests it in white oak barrels that had a former life holding American whiskey. The spirit has taken on a lovely goldenrod hue from its time in barrels and has added some lovely oak notes to the grain base and signature 9 botanical blend of the original.

Tasting Notes

Pleasant oak/barrel notes present mixed on the nose, giving it that tinge of whiskey-like goodness that a good barrel aged gin should have.

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Gin Reviews

Bourbon Barreled Big Gin

Big-Gin-Bourbon-Barrel-Aged

Bourbon Barreled Big Gin. 100% Corn base spirit, with a relatively traditional botanical bill buoyed by Tasmanian Pepperberry and Cardamom, the folks at Captive Spirits Distilling rest their flagship gin in barrels formerly used by Heaven Hill Distillery for their Bourbon.

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Cocktails

Sneak Preview: Varuna Cocktail

Varuna-Preview-Photo

I’m excited today to share with you a second sneak preview from my forthcoming book Gin: the Art and Craft or the Artisan Revival. 

One of the biggest challenges I’ve found facing the recent explosion in quite excellent Aged Gins is the lack of cocktails to make with them. I partnered with friend and cocktail creator Justin (follow him on Twitter @thetoptippler) to help engineer some novel creations that highlight these new spirits. One which I’m really proud to share with you today is called the Varuna Cocktail and it is an unlikely pairing of aged gin and coconut rum that is absolutely sublime and unique. You’re going to love this drink as much as I do, I promise. And you can get a head-start on making one of these new aged gin cocktails today.

The Aged Gin!

I was playing around with Aged Gins and Justin’s cocktail. Roundhouse Spirits in Colorado makes a fantastic Imperial Barrel Aged Gin (). In the Varuna, Justin’s drink uses this gin to showcase the chamomile, floral, caramelized notes and marries them perfectly with the slight coconut note from the dash of rum, all in a rich, frothy texture.

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Gin Reviews

Long Table Bourbon Barrel Aged Gin

Canada - Long Table Aged Gin

The distillers at Long Table Distillery [among Vancouver’s first btw] take their classic London Dry Gin and age it in 30L oak barrels, formerly used to hold Bourbon. Their Bourbon Barrel Aged Gin is a limited edition spirit, with a pleasing goldenrod hue to it. It. Alike their other gins, this one rests on a foundation of botanicals from wild and other sources around the world, and has been distilled on their 300 L copper pot still.

Impressions

Lemon and white grapefruit zest on the nose, with buttery, wood laden notes just underneath. Cinnamon toast notes of butter, cinnamon sugar and even caramel. Really melds some of the olfactory character of both bourbon and gin. A lot to like here.

The spirit itself has a nice viscosity, and the aromatic character evolves steadily and gently on the palate. There’s also a heaviness to it that’s quite nice. Twisted lemon zests, crisp oak, flaky pastry and silky vanilla notes. Pine-laden juniper comes on toward the finish along with a touch of fennel. The finish is medium in length with a nice warmth, accompanied by a late hint of mintiness and anethole.

Quite nice on its own, it shows a lot of promise as a mixer.

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Gin Reviews

Bombay Amber

bombay-amber-bottle

Perhaps the best part of doing this new series of impressions is that I no longer have to hold back on sharing some tasting notes, just because I don’t have a full bottle of the gin. While I’d love to spend some time tasting Bombay Amber in a series of cocktails, it’s really just not plausible. That is unless I’m able to schedule a flight which connects/goes to Las Vegas, Toronto, Singapore, or Sydney. Though I’ve been doing a fair amount of traveling this year, those cities have eluded me. For now. Though I’ve got my eye on you Sydney.

I’ll spare you my thoughts on travel retail*, and get down to the gin.

In <100 Words

Take the standard Bombay Dry Gin [] botanical blend, and add smoky black cardamom, nutmeg, and the zest of a type of bitter orange. Could it be Seville? Myrtle Orange? Or maybe even Amara? My money is on Seville orange. It is then aged in oak barrels, which formerly held French Vermouth. The bottle is distinctive, unlike anything else, and as with Sapphire and East, it looks as if Bombay is pushing the envelope slightly further than it really is.

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Gin Reviews

Touchwood (Oaked Gambit Gin)

touchwood-pinup

Lucky Bastard Distillers’ combine a pin-up girl aesthetic with puns about “wood” [wood, as in what’s its aged in!] for all of their barrel aged spirits. But they’re not just about the bawdy jokes. Acute attention to detail and local character set their spirits apart and give them a distinctly “Saskatchewan” character. Their spirits are small batch, the ingredients are local and organic. The spirits have appreciable depth of character. Their aged gin uses their contemporary Gambit Gin as a base spirit [which features Saskatoon Berries, more on that in a moment], and then rest it in oak.

Saskatoon Berries? In the states, these small, blueberry shaped berries are known as “Juneberries,” and even before that they were known as Pigeon berries. Often a feature of prairie underbrush, these small (<20 ft tall) bushes grow across the prairies of the Northern United States and along the Rockies all the way through the Yukon up into Alaska. These small “wild” tasting fruits weren’t able to be grown commercially until only a few years ago. Demand is high, in part due to their prominence in local heritage cuisine such as Pemmican, jams, and even beers, but also due to their positioning by growers as the latest “superfruit.” Watch out pomegranate and acai!

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Gin Reviews

Waterloo Antique Barrel Reserve Gin

waterloo-barrel-aged

Waterloo Antique is the darkest Barrel Aged Gin we’ve seen yet. It’s dark brown, almost root beer or cola hue sets it apart. (Is this really an aged gin?) Another aspect of Waterloo Antique that is rare among aged gins is both the length of the aging and the methodology. It is composed of a blend of gins, each which have been aged different lengths of time, and in some cases as much as two years.

Tasting Notes

Wow, what a nose on this gin! Sweet, caramel, brown sugar and pecan pie, even a slight touch of dark rum. There’s some citrus and honeysuckle in the background, but this one is a stunner. Unlike any gin I’ve ever nosed before. It presses the buttons of what exactly you think an aged gin can be.

On the palate, it begins a little quiet than expected, with hints of rosemary, grapefruit. There’s a pronounced rich honeysuckle notes in the mids, rich and syrupy before the palate seemingly turns over itself, with a roar of spice and citrus, you’re getting hints of clove, allspice, nutmeg and then some tart lemon rind. The finish is unrepentant with long charred note, smoked cedar and grill, a touch bitter.

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Gin Reviews

Filliers Barrel Aged Gin

Filliers Barrel Aged Gin

Barrel Aged Gins are slowly becoming popular on both sides of the ocean. No longer is the domain of barrel aging a product, one not normally barreled, the exclusive domain of American distillers experimenting with their future whiskey barrels. Though it does still seem to be more common among distillers who also dabble in the dark spirits.

In our own < 100 Words

The Filliers family can trace their distillery’s origin back to a member of the family who distilled a Genever back in the 1700s. Enter today, the family name is still carrying the banner high. The Filliers’ distillery, in addition to the family Genever, also produces whiskey, and their namesake “28” gin, so named for the other 28 botanicals which are added to compliment the juniper. Like all families with multiple trades, the barrel aged gin puts the best of their gin world (28) with the best of their whiskey world (the barrel) and produces a wholly new product.

Tasting Notes

The color of the spirit is somewhat blonde, or champagne colored. It has only a faint yellow hue to it, remarkably lighter than other aged gins we’ve tried here.

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Gin Reviews

Hernö Juniper Cask Gin

Hernö Juniper Cask Gin

Every now and then, we see a gin which does something so crazy, it absolutely blows our mind.  Before we even get it into our glass.

When I hear about Herno distillery’s intention to age gin in a cask made out of juniper wood, I was absolutely boggled. Firstly, and pardon this preconception held by those of us who mostly encounter these small little garden variety junipers, with scraggly winding branches that peel and flake. All in all, I didn’t think you could do anything with the bark whatsoever.

The peoples of Europe have long used juniper; however, it wasn’t quite valued as a wood product. Juniper wood has issues with the way it knots, the type of grain, and its has only come back into vogue as a source of lumber due to technology which can mitigate some of these defects. Let me quote from sawmill which specializes in juniper some of the reasons why juniper isn’t usually used for casks, and can be cost-prohibitive to do so:

“The answer is to accept juniper for what it is.  It is beautiful, local and challenging.  It is not easy, normal or boring. 

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Gin Reviews

No. 209 Barrel Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon

no-209-cabernet

White wine, meet red.

Earlier we reviewed No. 209’s Savignon Blanc Barrel Reserve Gin, and we were quite a fan of its novel take on Aged Gin. This is the red wine version of that same gin, this time rested in Cabernet Sauvignon Barrels.

Its color is a rich deep shade of golden brown, close to an almond shell. It is much darker than the Sauvignon Blanc for comparison.

Tasting Notes

A very interesting and quite unique nose for a gin, lots happening here.

First cardamom, and then Madeira and Sherry. There’s a bit of that similar lemon and citrus rind note from the Blanc version, but the gin notes seem a little more in the background here. Less juniper initially, and unlike other aged gins, a mild nose that doesn’t assault you with oak and overt signs of aging.

The palate is complex as well: oily citrus and cassia initially. A robust full bodied middle, with juniper, pepper, baking spices and a bit of heat. The finish is somewhat oaky, but largely Sherry, with oxidized fruit, grapes, apple. Very smooth the whole way through. Complex and thoroughly enjoyable neat.

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