Spirit of The Month: Gin, Glorious Gin!

Gin bottles3
An entire month devoted to GIN!!

Wait, What? I know what you’re thinking. An entire month devoted to GIN??

Now, I happen to be a fan of the stuff but it actually took me a while to come around to this polarizing spirit. I know a number of people who have either had a bad experience with Gin or they think it just isn’t for them. Gin has that crazy-making reputation like Tequila in some ways, conjuring up images of London’s Gin Lane in the 1700s, with mothers dangling their dirty babies over railings while swigging on bottles of Mother’s Ruin (Gin’s unfortunate nickname at the time). But that was when Gin was mixed with TURPENTINE, you guys. It WAS crazy-making!

But for most people I know of who don’t care for Gin, it is the botanical aromas that tend to be the turn-off, many people claiming that it’s just too medicinal for them. I suppose that was my issue for while, too. It didn’t help that I came of drinking age when Vodka was king – that innocuous spirit that could be mixed so effortlessly with liters of Sprite and frozen cans of pink lemonade for a fancy New Year’s Eve “punch” my junior year at college, for instance. That shit was a HIT! It was the 90s. And those ‘Pink Fuck Me Ups’ were exactly what our college palates demanded – a slightly more grown up version of Capri Sun. Gin was never a consideration. We didn’t want to TASTE the booze.

While Vodka is still king in terms of sales in this country, our hard liquor options have expanded in recent years and our collective palates have come of age. Complex flavors are starting to be welcome again in our adult beverages and that has opened the door for Gin to make a comeback in a big way. Sans turpentine, of course. While it may have taken me a while, as well, to come around to the herbal, floral, and perfume-y nature of Gin, I eventually became one of its biggest champions. So much so, that I have decided to devote the month of June to my favorite late spring, early summer spirit. Over the course of the month, I’ll be touching on the history, different styles, popular brands and their flavor profiles as well as the experimental and small batch brands that are popping up around the country. I’ll also be featuring classic Gin cocktails as well as twists on those classics, original recipes with seasonal flavors and my favorite mixers that balance out the spirit best.

Come to the Gin side, why don’t you?

5 Comments on Spirit of The Month: Gin, Glorious Gin!

  1. KEN COLLINS
    June 5, 2013 at 12:14 am (4 years ago)

    Another interesting, fun-to-rrrrrrrread article.
    Martinis are like women’s breasts….one is not enough and three is too many.

    Reply
  2. Clare
    June 5, 2013 at 5:43 pm (4 years ago)

    Prairie, I have come into posession of some dried lavender and would love to hear your expert opinions on how I might incorporate it into some delicious summer drinks. A lavender (and honey?) simple syrup could pair well with some gin, methinks? Clare x

    Reply
    • Prairie Rose
      June 5, 2013 at 8:57 pm (4 years ago)

      Clare – Yes! A lavender simple syrup is SO easy to make and is a lovely complement to a Gin cocktail. It is also great with Sparkling Wine. You can even make those French 75s I mentioned a few posts back and trade out the regular, old simple syrup for the lavender syrup.

      Just take 1 cup water and 3 Tbsp dried lavender flowers and bring water and lavender to a boil. Stir in 2 cups sugar until fully dissolved. Reduce heat & simmer for about 5 minutes.
      Remove from heat and allow to cool, then strain out the lavender. Pour into bottles and keep in the refrigerator. It will store well for a couple of weeks.

      I’ve found, these syrups make lovely gifts for people if you get pretty bottles to put them in. You can always save a little lavender and tie around the rim in lieu of a bow.

      Reply
      • Clare
        June 8, 2013 at 4:09 pm (4 years ago)

        I have my Saturday afternoon project / Saturday evening drinks sorted now! Cheers!

        Reply

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