Gin, Glorious Gin tasting – Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Gin evokes the senses of Summer and bears the unique ability to take us away from the approaching dreary cold. The beauty of gin is in its botanicals, showing off the of many different herbs, spices, fruits and other ingredients in a delicate concoction of elegant essence. Gin distillers in the current age of gin are taking to using locally harvested botanicals of which express the uniqueness of their own terroir. All of this equates to a great amount of variety in the offerings available with new ones being made available nearly every week. In this tasting I selected a handful of unique and interesting gins that expressed just this, highlighting the interesting natures of each distilleries surrounding style. Here is what we tried.

Blackwater Gin No.5
A shocking result for the night, this interesting Irish gin is something of merit. The quality was something between refreshing and oily, an extremely silky mouthfeel complimenting it’s more citrusy components. The style is exceedingly approachable and seemingly left an impression on all who tasted coming in first place for favourites picks. – $48.99

Tempo Renovo Dry
This bottling was something to raise eyebrows by, tasting of a chocolate whey protein powder shake and orange creamsicles after being left in the freezer too long. If this unsettles your traditional gin sensibilities I would probably recommend you try it anyways as this one tied for second. A definite must have for the gin adventurous. – $30.99

Long Table Cucumber
A spin on an old favourite, if you enjoy the charming refreshment of Hendricks then Long Table’s Cucumber will be a fun endeavour into craft distillation. Based out of Vancouver, this niche producer is making tasty and a touch on the wild side spirit. The cucumber is in a perfumed state with other herby characters like bay leaves and parsley. A fresh walk through the garden. – $48.99

Panarea Island
Hailing from Italy, this interesting offering is produced from a notable Grappa distiller. Though their roots are in the grape must distilling business their aptitude for gin distillation is notable if not remarkable. I was personally quite enamoured with this bottling, maybe it was the blueberries they used, maybe it was the Patriotic Italian in me. That being said it couldn’t have just been me for this bottle was picked second favourite of the night. – $47.99

Well, this wasn’t anyone’s favourite, and it wasn’t exactly special (aside from the gimmicky “filtered through volcanic rock” aspect), but it was a reasonably well executed gin that can be expected when one spends thirty seven dollars. Nothing more, nothing less. If you are the type to get excited about the uniqueness of Iceberg Vodka this may be for you. Expect a better than Bombay experience, maybe a good replacement for whatever bar back bottle you have on hand. – $37.99

West Winds Broadside
Disclaimer: Only for the truly adventurous.  This bottle packs a whopping punch of alcohol strength but surprisingly manages it exceedingly well. The wonders of high proof gin are best seen when being used in cocktails where the spirit can let it’s freak flag fly, launching cannons full of robust flavour right at your senses. Staff favourite that turned out to be a class favourite as well. – $67.99


There it is, another gin expedition undertook and successfully completed. So many new releases merit so many more tastings in the future and I truly look forward to getting a new batch of interesting bottles. Until we meet again at the next tasting I wish the wind to blow on your back and your glass to never empty of that glorious spirit.

- Hunter

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