Articles Tagged: brooklyn

Tonic Water

Hella Tonic (original)

Hella-Tonic

Founded in Brooklyn, produced in Queens and proudly representing New York City, The Hella Company is small batch, all natural and handcrafted. Originally started as a bitters company, they’ve recently moved into the world of tonic syrups as well. Today we’re reviewing their baseline offering, a combination of citrus peels, real sugar, lemongrass and other undisclosed spices. They offer other tonic syrups, including a Hibiscus variant as well.

Tasting Notes

A surprising herbal note, is present on the nose as well. It’s deep, surprisingly resinous and green.

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Other Thoughts

What’s in a name? The Curious Frequency of Product Name Lawsuits among US Craft Gins

It is inevitable that in a rapidly expanding ecosystem such as microdistilled gins that conflict may arise. However, one thing that has been surprising to me is the frequency with which gins distilled in near complete isolation of one another have stumbled across the exact same name. Inevitably, as your name is your identity and how consumers will know your gin, its is important to get it right. In most cases, distillers differentiate themselves with flavors and botanicals to standout. But sometimes those differences aren’t enough [or more accurately, lawyers worry those might not be enough] and two brands take the dispute to court to fight for their name. Here is a short list of some of the more notable gin trademark disputes from the last few years:

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2011: Brooklyn, NY and NOT Brooklyn, NY Perhaps the most famous of the gin trademark lawsuits. This one arose when Breuckelen Distilling [located in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, New York] trademarked the name “Brecukelen” [pronounced exactly like the borough] and Miami based distiller Angel Santos trademarked the name “Brooklyn Gin,” which although it is not made in the borough, uses the borough’s identity as its inspiration for the bottle and design.

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Gin Reviews

Dorothy Parker Gin

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Who is Dorothy Parker? First and foremost, who is Dorothy Parker? and why is a gin named after her?

Probably her best link to gin is her widely known quote “‘I like to have a Martini, two at the very most; three, I’m under the table, four I’m under my host!'”

 Attributable quips aside, she was a renowned screenwriter, poet and critic. Her wit was described as “caustic,” and cost her a job with Vanity Fair in 1920 when higher-ups grew tired of  her bold criticisms. She was a member of the Algonquin Round Table, a 1920’s association of influential New York City writers. She was a social activist, whose  left-wing activities actually got her on the Hollywood Blacklist despite two academy award nominations for her work.

So it was her reputation in the New York City arts scene, her wit, and her enthusiasm for gin which led to New York Distilling Company naming one of their two flagship gins after her.

And on to the Gin: The nose is sweet and floral. Hibiscus and fruit. It smells sweet. In my initial notes I had written ‘reminds me of Starbucks’ passion fruit ice tea.’ Bright, refreshing, inviting and somewhat unique.

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Cocktails

50 States of Gin: Aged Gin Tasting at Breuckelen Distillery

As part of the “50 States of Gin” weekend we made two special visits to New York City area distillers who have developed their own versions of two variations on gin. The first is “Aged Gin” and we visited with Brad Estabrooke whose hopes to have an aged variation of his flagship Glorious Gin out soon. The second visit was with New York Distillery for a look at Navy Strength Gin.

Legal Department Here, thought we should point out that Gin is different from other spirits in that it is not permitted to talk about “age,” “years” or an “aging” process.

That is quite technically correct. In the strictest sense of the guidelines for gin, “age” is not considered an aspect of the spirit, and therefore how it is handled in terms of bottling, labeling, and selling is subject to a different level of scrutiny. So if anyone asks, when I say “Aged Gin” you tell the lawyers I’m saying “New Oak Flavored Gin.” Back to the show.

Oh and one more note, every gin will also get their own dedicated full review quite soon too.

Roundhouse Gin from Colorado. It was rather smooth, and was perhaps my favorite of the tasting.

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Other Thoughts

Holiday Gift Guide 2010: Liquors

As I hinted at yesterday, it’s been a good year for drinking. There’s plenty of fabulous gins out on the shelf at this very moment that would perfect for the gin (or even non-gin) lover in your life.

First, I start with a classic, a gin that I think is perfect for anyone in your life who loves a good drink. Hendrick’s Gin has won “Gin of the year” and has been voted “World’s best Gin” in its ten year history- and with good reason. It has 11 Botanicals, among which are coriander, lemon, sage, juniper, Angelica and Orris root. But what really sets it apart is the cucumber and rose petal infusion which gives it a distinctive aroma. This perfect harmony appeals to even the vodka drinkers in all of our lives. So its okay to give them a nudge in the right direction and give them a bottle of Hendrick’s.  You don’t even need to be told, its definitely okay to give to the gin drinker in your life. Trust me. The Gin is In Review (4.5 / 5) / Hendricks’ Website / The Unusual Times P.S.: Thanks to Lauren for the lovely bottle of the World’s Most Unusual Gin.

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Gin Reviews

Glorious Gin [at time of review, Breuckelen Gin]

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I have been excited to try this gin since the day I read that two gin distilleries were opening in Brooklyn, NY.  The New Yorker in me was thrilled that a craft, seemingly regulated out of existence in urban areas, was coming back to the city I lived in.The gates opened this past spring, and a short couple of weeks ago I finally picked up a bottle.

The first thing I noticed was the lovely bottle complete with a classy wax-sealed top. Anxious to try, I  grabbed a knife, slit the wax and poured myself a gin and tonic. The first thing that I noticed was the powerful scent of citrus. The bottled smelled noticeably more of citrus than many other gins I’ve tried – but it wasn’t just the smell, it was the components of the smell, and Brecuklen is the only gin I know of where grapefruit stands so boldly.

The grapefruit is hardly a secret, nor are any of the other botanicals in this gin.  Brad Estabrooke, the distiller himself, told the Village Voice that in addition to juniper and lemon, rosemary and ginger are also in there.

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