Orange Blossom Honey— the honey used to make Comb 9’s base spirit— is a monofloral honey, which means that it is predominantly the honey produced by bees pollinating a single species of plant. Orange Blossom Honey is highly regarded since at the time bees are pollinating orange flowers, not much else is in bloom. Therefore, Orange Blossom Honey is rather pure, and has a unique bright floral qualities. Comb 9 Gin and StilltheOne Distillery take advantage of this character. The base is wholly unique and maintains hints of those floral qualities in the end products [which include a vodka and a brandy in addition to their gin].
Honey is unusual for many reasons. Firstly, it takes a lot of honey to make a base spirit. Secondly, it’s very time consuming. In essence, a Mead must be first made before distilling the gin.
Comb 9 Gin is Sweet and rich at first, but simultaneously not that strong. Softly floral and very contemporary.
While the nose is rather mild, the taste is vivid. Lots of juniper up front, floral with hints of citrus. Some of the floral notes intimate notes of elderflower and lavender. The juniper kind of “peppers” in the middle with hints of spice.
Comb 9 Gin’s finish is rather dry with the juniper fading out, lingering acidic lemon pleasantly fades on the back of the palate. The finish is exceptionally long, and leaves an interesting closing note and sensation. I want to say that it finishes in the back side corners of the mouth and quickly fades towards the back, the flavor racing away.
Furthermore, Comb 9 Gin and its honey base spirit add a pleasant viscosity and somewhat oily, rich mouthfeel.
It works quite nicely in a Gin and Tonic— a floral character with warm honey and cinnamon like sweetness emerges.
Comb 9 Gin also works real well in a martini— bright and very sippable. Complimented nicely with vermouth without being too overwhelmed.
Also makes for quite a stellar Negroni, a drink I shared with David Smith of Summer Fruit Cup when we first got together this past summer. Comb 9 Gin worked great in conjunction with floral liqueurs and made a really nice Aviation.
I found that while it acquitted itself quite nicely neat, Comb 9 gin works great in cocktails.
Overall, Comb 9 Gin
A good contemporary styled gin which owes a good deal to its novel base.