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Spirits Reviews

Most Interesting Gins To Try This Year

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18/09/2020 Bringing you only the best Gins to try this year that were tasted and assessed by leading bartenders at the 2020 Bartender Spirits Awards.

Raymond Chandler in his novel The Long Goodbye said, “A real gimlet is half gin and half Rose's lime juice and nothing else.," and surely all gin lovers would agree to it.

Gin comes from its precursor, a Dutch spirit called genever, dating back to the 13th-century. It has a vast & rich history. Unlike drinks which are classified according to their distilling technique or the ingredients used to create the spirit, gin is a matter of taste. What it means is that gin is the spirit that has juniper as its predominant flavor and alcohol content of at least 37.5% ABV. Juniper berries have been used to make spirits practically back to the year dot.

 Here we present to you the most interesting gins to try this year.

Kinsale Gin

Distilled with great care and without compromise, Kinsale Gin by Kinsale Spirit Company is said to be a labor of love. This is a small batch, premium Irish Gin which was distilled with local botanicals from the Kinsale countryside - such as meadowsweet, elderflower, lemon verbena, and germanium. Spicy juniper balances the taste of this gin well with a flurry of bright, floral notes and sweet citrus.

The flavor of Kinsale Gin is true of the Kinsale countryside and the development process went through many iterations before the final harmonious aroma and taste were established.

Kinsale Gin won a Double Gold along with “Gin Of The Year,” and the distillery - Kinsale Spirit Company bagged “Gin Producer Of The Year” at the Bartender Spirits Awards held on Aug 13, 2020.

97 Points

V-Sinne Schwarzwald Dry Gin

V-Sinne Schwarzwald Dry Gin  made from 31 masterfully composed natural and hand-picked ingredients is a Double Gold and Best Package of the Year at 2020 Bartender Spirits Awards. 

The aroma and taste are soft but complex, balanced and yet clearly emphasized by juniper. Citrus notes are clearly recognizable, but do not dominate the taste too much. At the beginning there is a slight sweetness on the tongue, followed by a bouquet of the multitude of botanicals, berries and forest notes.

You can feel a slight hint of floral and spicy accents, as well as fresh cucumber. The 45% vol. are surprisingly mild, which is why it cuts a great figure on its own and also with tonic.

Fun fact - The processing and placing of the ingredients as well as the distillation process of  V-SINNE Black Forest Dry Gin are traditionally done by hand and even the labels on the back of bottle are hand-handwritten which make each bottle unique.

96 Points

Mahon Gin

Mahon Gin by Mahon from Spain wholly reflects its environment, the island of Menorca. Mahon Gin is unique & astonishing. The history of Mahon Gin is inseparable from that of Mahon, the legendary port city. Mahon Gin is named after the brother of Hannibal, the featured Carthaginian leader, and frequent island visitor. 

Mahon Gin bagged a Gold medal at the Bartender Spirits Awards held on Aug 13, 2020.

94 Points

O'Pinyon Gin

O'Pinyon Gin by Shelter Distilling from the United States has various botanicals - which include an abundance of local handpicked pinyon pine, juniper berries, coriander, lavender and orange peel. A 100% grain-based American gin with an Eastern Sierra piney flair, and a citrus backbone. 

O'Pinyon Gin bagged a Gold medal at the Bartender Spirits Awards held on Aug 13, 2020.

94 Points

Empress 1908 Gin

Empress 1908 Gin by Victoria Distillers by Canada is handcrafted in small batch copper-pot stills. This gin has a forward earthiness from butterfly pea blossoms and Fairmont Empress House Tea blend, followed by robust citrus notes from grapefruit peel, delicate floral hints from rose petal,s and warm spice from ginger and cinnamon.

Empress 1908 Gin is a collaboration between Victoria Distillers and the legendary Fairmont Empress Hotel in Victoria, British Columbia. In addition to more traditional botanicals, Victoria Distillers add a signature blend of black tea served at the Empress Hotel, and butterfly pea blossom - an exotic herb that balances the traditional citrus notes of gin with a warm herbal earthiness, and natural indigo color. Empress 1908’s combination of exquisite taste, delicate aroma, soft texture, and remarkable presentation provide the perfect base for a new aesthetic of cocktail creation and enjoyment.

Empress 1908 Gin grabbed a Gold medal at the Bartender Spirits Awards held on Aug 13, 2020.

94 Points

Waterloo Antique Gin

Waterloo Antique Gin by Treaty Oak Brewing and Distilling Co from the United States ages in medium-char, white oak barrels to create body and complexity of flavor and a robust mouth-feel unusual in gin.  It has rich woody vanilla notes with the botanical backbone of a gin.
Waterloo Antique Gin has a floral & vanilla nose, nutmeg & leather, with a cinnamon finish.

Waterloo Antique Gin 1908 Gin won a Gold medal at the Bartender Spirits Awards held on Aug 13, 2020.

94 Points

Artingstall's Brilliant London Dry Gin

Artingstall's Brilliant London Dry Gin by Minhas Distillery from the United States comes in an elegant package that prepares you for the sophisticated gin inside. 

Artingstall's Brilliant London Dry Gin is released by Paul Feig, a brilliant Hollywood movie creator. Expect refined aromas and flavors of juniper and citrus with subtle spice. The palate is crisp and clean with a delicate finish. Serve straight or with mixers.
The perfumed lavender, blueberries in cream and sweet red peppers are well scripted. On the palate, this 84-proof spirit lilts with white pepper and peppermint, creamy, and bursting with floral notes.

Artingstall's Brilliant London Dry Gin won a Gold medal at the Bartender Spirits Awards held on Aug 13, 2020.

93 Points

Deviation Distilling Citrus Rosé Gin

Deviation Distilling Citrus Rosé Gin by  Deviation DIstilling from the United States comes with 46% ABV. Like the distillery’s American single malt whiskey, Citrus Rosé Gin begins with a 100% malted barley mash bill. Grapefruit, tangerine, lavender, and tarragon complement the delicate, floral flavor of the grain, yielding a bright ultra-premium gin that is delightfully pink.

Deviation Distilling Citrus Rosé Gin bagged a Gold medal at the Bartender Spirits Awards held on Aug 13, 2020.

93 Points

Cantarelle Gin De Provence

Cantarelle Gin de Provence by Domaine de Cantarelle  is a gourmet and aromatic Gin. This Gin is distilled in the Domaine exclusively from Provence grapes. Its aromas are 100% natural.

Cantarelle Gin De Provence scooped Gold medal at 2020 Bartender Spirits Awards

91 Points