Tanqueray Rangpur Lime Gin launched in 2006. At the time, it was a bit of a bold and unusual move. Signature botanicals gin were rare. Gins that higlighted unusual botanicals in their name were even rarer.
A Rangpur Lime isn’t really a lime. It’s known as a Canton lemon in some parts of the world— but it’s not a lemon either. It’s a hybrid of a mandarin orange and a citron. (Citrus × limonia). Its flesh is orange, the fruit highly acidic and the flavor is perhaps closer to a citron than any of the above. It’s used in place of a lime in some culinary applications because its high acidity; however, to summarize it’s best simply stated: a Rangpur Lime is truly its own thing.
Tanqueray Rangpur Lime Gin features the four signature botanicals of their Tanqueray London Dry Gin as a base. They then add three new ones: bay leaves, ginger and the aforementioned Rangpur Lime.
Nose: Lime dominates the fore— and although the rangpur is not a lime, the nose is decidedly lime-like. Juniper and a hint of traditional Tanqueray licorice and spice lie beneath. Quite nice.
Flavor: Slightly sweet in impression and quite citrus forward. The citrus is complex and could be described as having hints of lemon, tangerine and even grapefruit. Green juniper with slight pine facets comes in late. Hints of laurel, coriander and licorice round it out.
Finish: Only slightly dry with sour citrus remaining dominant, although above a spice-led accord that feels distinctively Tanqueray like.
Overall, there are moments that feel slightly traditional and call-to-mind Tanqueray; however, it is very citrus forward. One thing that is interesting though is how this gin’s position in the market has aged.
In 2006 it was bold— almost earth-shatteringly contemporary. People were shook. In the 2020’s however? It feels rather ordinary. It’s certainly citrus dominant, but nowhere near as much so as others on the market.
Bartenders would be advised to treat Tanqueray Rangpur Lime Gin as a specialty citrus-forward gin. Mixed, its citrus profile complements fresh citrus quite well. Try it in a Gimlet, Tom Collins or an Evans style Gin and Tonic.
That being said, I was less of a fan of it in heavy spirit forward drinks such as the Martini. There’s a certain harshness and heat that doesn’t work as well here as it does in longer drinks.
Despite being on the market for over fifteen years, Tanqueray Rangpur Lime Gin endures because the popularity of citrus-forward gins has remained high. Overall, while it loses marks for balance, it’s a solid mixing gin for fans of citrus-forward gin.
Even within its own product line, I think Tanqueray makes two better gins that feature strong citrus profiles. Tanqueray 10 is better balanced with more juniper and classic gin flavor profile. For unabashedly citrus-forward and flavored gin applications, I prefer their Sevilla Orange Gin.