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Jun 4, 2009 05:12 PM

Gin - my anathema

I really enjoy clean botanicals ... but decided to mix .. play/venture off a bit.
I thought, the supplement had to be vegetal ...
so I've given a "drop" of ... Fernet Branca, Cynar, Campari ...
and liked the added aspect. Thoughts/experiences?

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  1. All three are pretty much my go-to gin mixers.

    1. Have you tried Hendrick's, the Scottish gin?

      1 Reply
      1. re: DavidT

        Hendrick's is my absolute favorite gin; I've been pleased to see more and more bars carrying it over the last year. In currently 100-degree Dallas, it's a day-changer of a drink. ;-)

        Second favorite is probably Aviation's New Western Dry Gin. A bar around here uses it for its "Pepper Smash" cocktail made with red bell peppers... delicious.

      2. All good choices, though a little Fernet goes a long way. I'd look into potable bitters in general, including other Italian amari (Amaro Nonino, Ramazzotti, Averna, Abano, etc.). Other fun stuff: monastery liqueurs (Benedictine, Charteuse), Maraschino (Luxardo is my favorite), various vermouths sweet and dry (including Vya, Antica Formula, Punt et Mes, and Dolin) and similar aromatized wines (like Lillet and Dubonnet), various orange liqueurs (Cointreau, Amer Picon, Curacao), and the little aromatic bitters (Angostura, Angostura Orange, the various Fee Brothers bottlings, Regan's Orange #6, etc.).

        You might want to try Plymouth Gin, too, which has a far subtler juniper note than most English gins. It's what I use when I want to fool my gin-hating friends into liking gin (I start them on Aviations).

        4 Replies
        1. re: MC Slim JB

          DT: I find the cucumber note of Hendrick's so pronounced that I relegate it to G&Ts and Pimm's cups.

          MC.S.JB: I switch London Drys and Plymouths but have never "played" with the latter ... good suggestion.
          Angostura/Fee Brothers was my first branch ... I've also given Aperol a shot.
          B&B/Charteuse intrigues.

          1. re: TheDescendedLefticleOfAramis

            A good summer cooler: gin and fresh grapefruit with a dose of Aperol (not too much). On rocks in a tall glass, ├╝ber refreshing as an aperitif.

          2. re: MC Slim JB

            Luxardo Marashino and gin is my summertime favorite (with a dash of citrus for acid). Simply wonderful.

            1. re: MC Slim JB

              Ah yes - Aviations! Any luck trying the new violet liqueurs on the market? I just make my Aviations without. Love the Luxardo Maraschino and used some recently to make my own marasca style cherries. Not quite like the real thing but darn tasty.

              Also a big fan of a martini style cocktail with gin (usually 209), cointreau, lemon juice and a twist. Or just a Hendrick's martini. Which seems like the perfect thing for later today.

            2. The original comment has been removed
              1. saffron (as in Old Raj gin)
                ginger (as in Canton ginger cognac)
                apricot (as in Rothman&Winter, or better yet, Giffard Abricot du Roussillon)

                5 Replies
                1. re: barleywino

                  If the rain ever lets up I'll have to give marais's recipe a turn ... with ruby grapefruit.

                  However, your suggestion of apricot played with my buds ...
                  gin and ... wait ... beaume de venise ... an insidious base for a tall drink indeed.

                    1. re: barleywino

                      Given the economy, how about a trochenbeerenauslese?

                      1. re: TheDescendedLefticleOfAramis

                        in bad times, people spend more on booze ;)...Moto in Chicago does the icewine martini

                        1. re: barleywino

                          "in bad times, people spend more on booze" ...
                          ( So if we catch a "raw W", work FAZ by day and long "VO" .-) )
                          Following through on fruit ...
                          my weak attempt at sourcing Luxardo (MC.S.JB's suggestion) left me with no alternative:
                          I dropped a Vignola ...
                          not bad!