5 Perfect Gins to Celebrate World Gin Day

World Gin Day main image revd

I love, love, love to celebrate a good food holiday {National Chocolate Cake or Wine Day, anyone?} so I was really delighted to discover “World Gin Day” recently. Now before you start to roll your eyes about another manufactured so-called “holiday,” you should know that World Gin Day was created by actual gin lovers in appreciation of a spirit that has gained a tremendous amount of popularity in the last couple of year.

World Gin Day, held on the second Saturday in June, was originally created by gin enthusiast and owner of the blog “Yet Another Gin.” Now in its 9th year, this spirit-fueled holiday is currently organized and hosted by the fun gin blog and website “Gin Monkey.” According to the Gin Monkey website, World Gin Day is a “global celebration of all things gin” based on the simple premise of getting people all around the world to learn about the joys of; experiment with; and, of course, drink more gin.

The holiday has grown organically through other gin enthusiasts; word of mouth; bars participating with gin cocktail specials; and fabulous blogs like The Bubbleista {wink} sharing and promoting the day, and that in my opinion makes World Gin day worthy of commemorating.

Gin has its roots deeply entrenched in Holland and Britain, but its recent resurgence has really ignited excitement for this spirit and now there are Italian gins and French gins, Australian and German gins available for your creating your ideal G + T {that gin and tonic for the uninitiated).

I started really appreciating gin about three years ago and now I’ve officially gone down the gin rabbit hole. I love, love, L-O-V-E my French 75s and I’ve been having a blast experimenting with how a particular gin’s specific botanical formula can make the same cocktail have completely different flavor profiles.{To delve a bit more into gin’s wide-ranging taste profile that coasts from herbaceous juniper to malty whiskey click the hotlink to read Eater.com’s fun article on common gin styles.}

Want to do a little gin experimentation of your own? Here are 5 wonderful #BubbleistaApproved gins for you to try.

 

World Gin Day Nolets

Nolet’s Silver

Nolet’s gin hails from the Netherlands and has been crafted by the same family for over 10 generations. It has garnered several awards and accolades for its botanical blend of Turkish rose, peach and raspberry which were “specially selected and are individually macerated and then distilled to give the gin its distinctive, all-natural flavor and aromas.” There are definitely other ingredients in the botanical mix but, like a few other gin makers, Nolet’s isn’t telling.

HOW TO DRINK IT: With it’s pronounced, lush floral notes, I prefer to use Nolet’s to make a particularly lovely classic “Gin & Tonic,” and for my oft-sipped French 75. It would also add some good depth and dimensions to a simple “Gin Rickey.”

$40

World Gin Day Alkkemist

Alkkemist

A good girlfriend of mine, an amazing chef who trained a a multi-Michelin starred restaurant in Spain, was the first person to hip me to gins from the region, and if there was any such thing as a “sexy gin,” this would be it.

First off, it’s distilled by moonlight. Yes, by the light of the silvery moon. If that isn’t high on the sexy meter I’m not sure what it. Second, it has a delicate yet quite complex flavor palate filled with lush botanicals, unique fruits, and distinctive spices not typically found in gin.

The mysterious botanical formula is purported to be made with some, and/or gives off the following flavor and aroma notes, of the following botanicals: Turkish rose, cumin, curry, lavender, lemongrass, “lime leaf, tomato seed, candy coated anise,” orange and lemon peel, rose petals, samphire, Muscat grape, chamomile, sage, thyme, mint, coriander, juniper, and strawberry (!!!).

Seriously, how can you possibly resist that?

In any case, I adore how fresh and crisp and layered and distinctive this gin is.

HOW TO DRINK IT: The botanicals make this perfect for cocktails. Because of it’s use of basil in the recipe, a “Garden Gimlet” {I love these} would be a great partner for the Alkkemist.

$48

World Gin Day Koval

Koval

I sipped this gin for the 1st time at a wine and spirits industry tasting 2 years ago and instantly loved it. The nose definitely gave impressions of sitting in the middle of a meadow of flowers on a sunny, breezy spring day. The real magic happens though on the palate.

The floral notes hit your tongue right away but what really enchants me about this gin is the mouthfeel of it. It’s weighty and almost creamy in consistency, giving it a fabulous richness. It rounds itself out with some spice, vanilla, juniper and peppery bitter notes that keep things really interesting.

HOW TO DRINK IT: When I first tried Koval I drank it neat, and oddly it is absolutely wonderful all by itself.  You can sip this gin neat, on the rocks, or perfectly in a classic gin cocktail, like a “Corpse Reviver No. 2“. It’s versatile and oh so very delish.

$42

World Gin Day St George

St. George Gin

I’ve had the pleasure of drinking all three of St George gins: “Botanivore,” “Terroir,” and “Dry Rye” and the are all so different from each other.

The “Botanivore” is comprised of “angelica root, bay laurel, bergamot peel, black peppercorn, caraway, cardamom, cilantro, cinnamon, citra hops, coriander, dill seed, fennel seed, ginger, juniper berries, lemon peel, lime peel, orris root, Seville orange peel, and star anise.”

For those familiar with wine terminology, the “Terroir” gin is exactly what you think–an aromatic gin with a real “sense of place” that echoes the area it was created from and in. Since St.  George is made in California, the flavor is “forest-driven and earthy,” and is primarily made with Douglas fir, California bay laurel, coriander, and coastal sage. It is intense, but super flavorful.

The “Dry Rye” is comprised of just six botanical ingredients: Juniper berries, black peppercorn, caraway, coriander, grapefruit peel, and lime peel and is the perfect gin for the whiskey lover.

HOW TO DRINK IT: Be adventurous and go for the Dry Rye out of the 3 gins, then try it to make a fab Negroni or an Aviation. You can also use it with any classic cocktail that calls for rye whiskey for a fun and interesting twist.

$36

World Gin Day Hendricks

Hendrick’s

I’d be remiss if I didn’t include the gin that arguably started it all when it comes to creative botanical blends. Before Hendrick’s had it’s rise in popularity in the early 2000’s, the mainstream gin choices were essentially, well, only Tanqueray and Bombay Sapphire.

Hendricks came along and added fragrant rose and bright, refreshing cucumber into the mix and gin would happily never be the same.

HOW TO DRINK IT: Gin cocktail lovers, this one is for you. This is a great gin for general cocktail making. Try Hendrick’s in a Moscow Mule (or one of these fun variations). The fresh cucumber in the botanical blend will add lovely notes to these cocktails.

$30

 

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