Behold the Scots Pine (Pinus sylvestris). Growing across Europe, it can be found in the Mountains in Southern Europe, and in lower regions as you go further north. Distinctive in its own right, forests can be found of this majestic blue-green needle bearing tree across the continent. The folks at Filliers Distillery in Belgium, best known for their Genevers, have taken their Dry Gin 28 (also quite excellent, but you’ll have to check out my forthcoming book for that review**) and added the buds of the Scots Pine to create an absolutely splendid gin that earns the badge “piney.”
The nose is (as you might have guessed we would say) piney.
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We are a gin blog. But to neglect Genever is like forgetting to call your parents on their birthdays. Its gin’s predecessor, the ancestral spirit from which modern day gin evolved.
What is Genever (quickly, in <100 words)
Genever is graded on a scale from jonge, to oude, all the way up to korenwijn by how much of the spirit is made up of malt wine and how much sweetening is legally allowed. In addition to sugars, distillers add botanicals (juniper chiefly) to create the drink’s unique flavor. Genever highlights the base spirit’s character and its primary flavor generally comes from that rather than the botanical mix.
About Filliers Oude Graanjenever (in <100 words)
Firstly, if a product bears the name graanjenever, it must have been distilled in Belgium, the Netherlands, or a couple small parts of Germany of France. The term is protected as a name based appellation. It also means that a spirit is distilled from only malt and grain. Secondly, this is an oude style of genever, which means that it contains at least 15% malt wine (think literally a distilled beer, about 100+ proof) by volume. Its been aged for 5 years in American Oak, but that fact has nothing to do with the word Oude.
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