This gin’s reputation precedes itself somewhat. Particularly during the long dark era in which Old Tom Gin was completely unavailable. Its name taunted people from afar, with the possibility/potentiality of a long lost style still extant on some far away tropical location. Only available in that tropical location. I mean, isn’t that the dream? To have to to travel to try something?
Well the sad news is that I’m not quite sure it delivers on the promise of the name. It is not the long lost Old Tom bartenders were looking for. Or might this be?
The Old Tom Debate, concisely
Is Old Tom Gin aged? not aged? sweetened with sugar? sweetened with botanicals?
The search for a precise definition of this style eludes cocktail historians. Jerry Thomas wasn’t precise in his 19th century cocktail books, leaving many looking for the 19th century equivalent of the Gin is In: didn’t anyone out try every style of gin and write tasting notes for each?