Base Spirit: Cane

The base spirit of a gin refers to the distillate to which botanicals were added. It’s helpful to think about the base spirit as a vodka-like spirit that the distiller used as a starting point— a blank canvas upon which the gin was designed.

But choice of base alone doesn’t mean that you’ll be able to taste it. Depending on choices the distiller makes, such as how many times the base is distilled, or to what strength it is distilled to— there might be no character at all coming from the base spirit.

Cane Base

Gin is rather unique among spirit categories. While many spirits are defined by the type of distillate— for gin this is not true. Gin can have any base spirit, and as long juniper is predominant. It’s gin.

Cane and cane byproducts are what many rums are distilled from. Therefore a gin that uses a cane base is sometimes referred to as a “rum-like” gin.

Many gins that start from a cane base are distilled in regions where sugarcane is a major crop. Think traditional rum-producing regions such as the Caribbean, South America and southeast Asia.

Cane base gins fit into two categories. Some use the cane as one would any other grain and distill it to a point of purity where there’s no residual cane flavor. But others choose to use that slightly funky cane base note as a flavor to build their gin around.

Gins distilled from a cane base


Joe's Pond Gin
Last updated February 6th, 2020 by Aaron Knoll
Tenth Ward Distilling Company Genever Style Gin
Last updated January 19th, 2020 by Aaron Knoll
Last updated December 9th, 2019 by Aaron Knoll
M Gin Bottle
Last updated July 21st, 2019 by Aaron Knoll
Forager Gin
Last updated March 6th, 2019 by Aaron Knoll
Tiki Gin
Last updated August 18th, 2018 by Aaron Knoll
Last updated January 20th, 2017 by Aaron Knoll
Last updated November 12th, 2016 by Aaron Knoll