How Gin Appeared?
The great grandfather of gin is genever, a malt spirit drink which was popular in the Middle Ages in Holland. As with many traditional old spirits, it was strong and crudely distilled. and. To improve the taste, they started adding some botanicals such as juniper berries, fruits, spices.
The Middle Ages was a rough period in Europe with constant bloody battles which, obviously, were stressful for the warriors. To get more courage and reduce the fear of being killed or wounded Dutch soldiers started to drink Genever before battles to enhance their bravery. That is how the legend about “Dutch Courage” appeared.
Genever was brought to England in the 17th century (Brits called it “gin”, because, you know, three syllables is way too many sounds to pronounce), and it was firstly used as medicine for almost all known illnesses. In the 18th Century the British combined it with the new column distillation technology and evolved gin into a spirit that had little in common with genever. people enjoyed this new style so much that they started to drink Gin purely for pleasure. It was cheap and everyone could afford to drink this liquor not just on special occasions. There were even so-called Gin districts, which were crowded with lovers of Gin lying on every corner, literally. This period is called the “Gin Craze” and was captured in the famous image ‘Gin Lane’ by William Hogarth.
The government solved this issue by its most powerful instrument - taxation. They taxed Gin and in this way shortened the level of consuming the spirit. Despite that, Gin remains one of the favorite spirit drinks of the British and theart of craft Gin making is developing and getting ever more popular.
Classification of Gin
Now Gin is produced in various ways from a plethora of ingredients and, hence, many different flavours and types of Gin have emerged. There is now a wide range of Gin:
London Dry Gin
London Dry Gin is the most popular type of Gin, covering around 90% of the whole Gin market in the world. Contrary to its name, it doesn’t have to be produced in London. London Dry Gin gets the juniper flavor from neutral spirits re-distilled with botanicals. Nothing is added after the re-distillation. It has at least 37.5% of alcohol and up to 45% ABV.
London Dry Gin was the only type of Gin for a long time and some makers tried to experiment with its flavor by adding new botanicals.
Modern Distilled Gin
With the explosion of gin, led by the UK and Spain, there’s a whole new style of gin that has evolved. This type of gin dials back on the juniper flavour and experiments with every more wild and unusual botanicals.
While flavoured gins have always existed, they have exploded in popularity recently and now almost every gin producer has a variety of different flavours ranging from ‘pink’ gins flavoured with rhubarb and strawberry to apple, elderflower, or even blood orange.
Old Tom is a sweeter and lighter version of the most popular London Dry Gin. The spirit is not overwhelmed with juniper influence and has a lower level of alcohol. To make the Old Tom Gin sweet and tasty, producers may add naturally sweet botanicals or sugars.
It is infused with fruits and sugars, and sometimes unicorn tears. Sloe gin is the most famous of the gin liqueurs. . Gin liqueurs are much sweeter and lighter than other types of Gin, and very drinkable as a result. So, if you want to try Gin, but you are afraid of the strength of 40% ABV Gin, you might like to try Gin Liqueur, which has 20%-30% ABV and a sweet flavour.
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