Do you really know Gin? Do you know London Dry Gin has a rich and tasty history? Discover it here in London
1, 2, 3… gin !
Gin is a distilled drink, a derivative of « jenever » the famous dutch drink introduced in England during the « glorious revolution » which set King William of Orange on the throne in 1688. William came from Holland. Under his reign, the drink we now know as Gin became very popular. In 1830, the distillation process changed and gave as result a more « pure » gin with a predominant juniper taste. Nowadays, this strong alcohol is made from non malted barley and extracts of juniper, perfumed with cardamom & various herbs and fruits. These bring characteristic taste to gin. London Dry Gin, is dry only in the sense that it lacks sugar to make it sweet. The man behind the recent recipe of N°3 is Dr David Clutton, one of the world’s foremost authorities on gin. His motto is to keep it simple so only three fruits and three spices are added making up the botanicals. Juniper, from Italy, giving pine and lavender typical of gin taste. Sweet Spanish orange peel, Grapefruit peel. Angelica root helps to make the gin dry. Moroccan coriander seed releases a lemon flavour and a spicy, slightly peppery finish. Cardamom pods add a spicy, aromatic, yet warm bite. So here we have a creamy texture very well rounded into the palate, a middle sweetness and an aftertaste of citrus, a most quintessentially exquisite gin experience. In Belgium, N°3 recommended price is 31,99€ and available at Carrefour, Cora, Match and Delhaize supermarkets.
With N°3, a classic cocktail is one served by Alessandro Palazzi, head bartender at Duke’s, a perfect Dry Martini, available for tasting. Duke’s is « the place to be » in Central London for sipping fine cocktails.
Ronnie Cox, our brand heritage guide, chats us through the history of Berry Bros, & Rudd. The oldest wine merchant in London established in 1698 first as a coffee merchant. At the time of the founding of Berry Bros, & Rudd , only 1% of the entire population of Great Britain could read or write. As of around 1760, the upper class gathered in gentlemen’s clubs where like minded souls congregated, well, only men of course…The BBR shop is located to this day next to the former royal palace of Saint James and the area used to house number of pieds à terre for the aristocracy living next to the king for their best interest. Having a wine merchant, a casino and a bordello all in the same vicinity was most convenient in a male dominated society. Nowadays, the selection of BBR’s wine primeurs is outstanding, the spirits section is most impressive. This place is really a sanctuary for cognoscenti, a port of call for all wine & spirits lovers. www.bbr.com
Moving on to visit another gin maker. Sipsmith is the brand name for a gin distilled in Chiswick, the first gin distilled on the british soil since 200 years, the last gin license granted before, went back to 1823. When Sam Galsworthy & his partners had the brilliant idea of resuscitating copper distilled gin in Central London, they had a hard job convincing bureaucracy. It took 2 years but in the end they prevailed and now, the distillery is in full bloom elaborating great spirits to serve an ever growing market of consumers. The investment risk was high and reflects in the copper stills first name’s, Prudence, Patience & Constance, which really is the mantra of Sipsmith. Ten botanicals added: Macedonian juniper berries, Bulgarian coriander seed, French angelica root, Spanish liquorice root, Italian orris root, Spanish ground almond, Chinese cassia bark, Madagascan cinnamon, Sevillian orange peel and Spanish lemon peel. The future of Sipsmith lays in old product development, such as the mixture named « The Bishop », cloves & clementines, elaborated by master distiller Jared Brown. www.sipsmith.com
Londoners are celebrating a gin revival with consumers of all generations congregating to sip cocktails delivered in a sophisticated way. The spectrum has enlarged, gin choice has proliferated, women are drinking more Martini’s than before and sharing occasions with a sense of reward and higher expectations when going out. So, in general, people are drinking less in quantity and opting for high quality and this is exactly what Sipsmith delivers !
London Dry Gin: quintessential, classic, traditional. Complex and aromatic, smooth for a Martini, rich and balanced, perfect for a Gin & Tonic.
V.J.O.P.stands for Very Juniper Over Proof: The result is top class gin, a big, bold boost for moral !
Sloe Gin, distilled London Dry Gin in copper still, then left to rest on wild sloe berries, hand-picked in the autumn. The result is subtle, complex and bursting with flavour. Food pairing with strong cheeses or chocolate desserts, add a sip into Champagne !
In search of a place to taste these gins in London ? http://charlottes.co.uk/bistro/
In Belgium, London Dry Gin recommended price is 33,99€, V.J.O.P is 40,99€ and Sloe Gin is 32,99 € all available at Carrefour & Cora supermarkets.