Il Gin del Professore à la Madame

Flavor Profile

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The Il Gin del Professore line of gins are designed to be reminiscent of the older style of macerated gins. A collab between Antica Distilleria Quaglia (producers of Grappa and Vermouth) and the Jerry Thomas Speakeasy in Rome, it leverages Antica’s expertise in Vermouth making to create a gin that straddles the line between aperitif and gin. Botanicals are macerated directly in grape spirit, making it in an Old Tom in the bathtub/compounded style.

Gin del Professore à la Madame uses a more floral selection of botanicals and is designed to be a “feminine” counterpoint to their Gin Monsieur offering.

All the juniper is grown in Italy. The Madame variation includes a couple relatively unusual botanicals. Tansy, is a wild flower, common in Europe that was seen in 19th century cocktail manuals as a good ingredient to macerate in gin. Zedoary, or white turmeric, is native to Southeast Asia and is described as having an “aroma of mango” but the “flavor of ginger.”

Tasting notes

Color: Marigold and transparent.

Aroma: Heavy cinnamon on the nose, almost medicinal. Vanilla and stone fruit on the edges. Very, very spicy aromatically.

Flavor: Gin del Professore à la Madame is quite spiced to the palate, with red hot, dry cinnamon dominating throughout.

Early, the gin is at its sweetest and lightest. Vanilla, custard and orange zest. Mid-palate, warm cinnamon. Ginger and cloves enhance the warmth here.

Spiced warmth persists with as bitterness comes on. It’s botanical, with a combination of tansy, dandelion and gentian.

Finish: Dull throbs of cinnamon persist along with a moderate, but lasting bitterness.

Cocktails

Gin del Professore à la Madame is a challenging mixer. The cinnamon and bitterness come through in almost all applications.

In a gin and tonic, the tansy bitterness combines with quinine to be even more bitter. With a regular tonic, it comes off as an Indian tonic.

I’d recommend a Hot Toddy with it. You don’t even need to add a cinnamon stick. Warmed, the spices will emerge even more powerfully. Pair it with honey and lemon juice.

For me, the cinnamon is so aggressive that Gin del Professore à la Madame doesn’t taste a lot like gin when mixed. The spice botanicals are the dominant notes; therefore, bartenders mixing with this should be advised to treat it more like a spiced botanical spirit than a gin.

Overall, Gin del Professore à la Madame

Gin del Professore à la Madame is a great example of a gin, that might be more successful if pitched as a macerated botanical spirit. It tasted a bit like the winter holidays. It’s warmed, it’s spiced, but that local juniper is absolutely obscured.

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