|History of Gin|
Gin originated in the Netherlands in the 17th century - its invention is often credited to the physician Franciscus Sylvius. From there it spread to England after the Glorious Revolution put a Dutchman on the English throne. Dutch gin, known as jenever, is a distinctly different drink from English-style gin; it is distilled with barley and sometimes aged in wood, giving it a slight resemblance to whisky. Schiedam, in South Holland, is famous for its jenever. Jenever is produced in a pot still and is typically lower in alcohol and more strongly flavored than London gin.
Hogarth's Gin LaneGin became very popular in England after the government created a market for poor quality grain that was unfit to be used in brewing beer by allowing unlicensed gin production and at the same time imposing a heavy duty on all imported spirits. Thousands of gin-shops sprang up all over England. By 1740 the production of gin had increased to six times that of beer and because of its cheapness it became extremely popular with the poor. Of the 15,000 drinking establishments in London over half were gin-shops. Beer maintained a healthy reputation as it was often safer to drink the brewed ale than unclean plain water, but gin was blamed for various social and medical problems, and may have been a factor in the high death rate that caused London's previously increasing population to remain stable. The reputation of the two drinks was illustrated by William Hogarth in his engravings Beer Street and Gin Lane (1751). This negative reputation survives today in the English language; terms such as "gin-mills" to describe disreputable bars or calling drunks "gin-soaked". The Gin Act 1736 imposed high taxes on retailers but led to riots in the streets. The prohibitive duty was gradually reduced and finally abolished in 1742. The Gin Act 1751 however was more successful. It forced distillers to sell only to licensed retailers and brought gin-shops under the jurisdiction of local magistrates. Gin in the 18th century was produced in pot stills, and was somewhat sweeter than the London gin known today.
In 1832 the column still was invented, and later in the 19th century the London dry style was developed. Gin thus became a more respectable drink. In tropical English colonies, gin was used to mask the flavor of quinine, a protection against malaria, which was diluted in tonic water. This was the origin of today's popular Gin and tonic, even though quinine is no longer effective against malaria. Many other gin-based mixed drinks were invented, including the martini. Gin, in the form of secretly-produced "bathtub gin", was a common drink in the speakeasies of Prohibition-era America due to the relative simplicity of the basic production methods. It remained popular as the basis of many cocktails after the repeal of Prohibition. At the present time there are numerous types and manufactures of gin, the most notable of which are listed below. During the most recent gin-tasting competitions it was held that the relatively new Tanqueray Ten was the world champion of gins followed closely by the previous world winner Bombay Sapphire. In 2005 South Gin made by Pacific Dawn Distillers of New Zealand received the Grand Gold with Palm Leaves at the Monde Selection in Brussels rating it as the best gin in the world.
Hogarth Engraving Gin Lane, 1751
|Dutch Origins of Gin|
(also known as Genever),is the national
Dutch drink. Juniper-flavored and strongly alcoholic, it is the traditional
liquor of the Netherlands and Flanders, from which gin has evolved. Believed
to have been invented by a Dutch chemist and alchemist named Sylvius de
Bouve (or Franciscus Sylvius), it was first sold as a medicine in the late
16th century. In the 17th century it began to be popular for its flavor.
Traditional jenever is still very popular in the Netherlands and Flanders.
European Union regulations specify that only liquor made in these 2 areas
can use the name jenever.
Jenever was originally produced by distilling maltwine (moutwijn in dutch) to 50% ABV. Because the alcohol didn't taste very nice due to lack of refined distilling techniques (only the pot still was available), herbs were added to enhance the flavour. The juniper berry (Jeneverbes in Dutch, which comes in its turn - from the French Genievre) was best for that, hence the name Jenever (and the English name Gin).
There are two types of Jenever: Oude (Old) and Jonge (Young). This is not a matter of aging, but of distilling techniques. Around 1900 it became possible to distill an almost neutral high-graded type of alcohol in taste, independent of the origin of the spirit. A worldwide tendency for a lighter and less outspoken taste, as well as lower prices, led to blended whisky in Great Britain, and in the Netherlands to Jonge Jenever. During the Great War, lack of imported cereals and hence malt, forced the promotion of this blend. Alcohol from molasses from the beet-sugar industry was used as an alternative to grainspirit. People started using the term Oude for the old-style Jenever and Jonge for the new style, which contains more grain instead of malt and can even contain plain sugar-based alcohol. In modern times, the label indicates when only grain and malt are used (then it's called Graanjenever).
Jenever is usually served very cold straight from a bottle that has been kept in a freezer. Jenever glasses are also often "frosted" by having been kept very cold. Jenever is often drunk with cold lager beer as a chaser; this is sometimes referred to as a kopstoot ("headbutt").
Korenwijn is a drink very similar to the 18th century style Jenever, and is often matured for a few years in an oak cask.
Hasselt, Belgium and Schiedam, the Netherlands are famous for their jenever.
Dutch-based Bols has a successful marketing operation for oude genever in South America. In Buenos Aires, ginebra is the spirit of choice when something stronger than wine or beer is desired.
Source: Wikipedia "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jenever"
|Gin Dictionary from Cocktailtimes.com|
Gin can be described as a flavored vodka. Gin distillers take neutral spirit, a mash of fermented grain to re-distill with numbers of botanicals. The primary source is juniper berries. The word 'gin' comes from genever, French word for juniper.
Gin was first produced in Holland for medicinal purposes around 1650 by a Dutch doctor, Franciscus de la Boe.
In the early days, gins that were sweetened with sugar for more palatable taste were called Old Tom. Terms like Dry or London Dry Gin were used to distinguish unsweetened gins from Old Tom.
After the Thirty Years' War British troops returned home with 'Dutch Courage.' Soon gin distillation took place in England. King William III, better known as William of Orange (1650 - 1702) actively encouraged gin production and gin was sometimes given to workers as a part of their wages.
According to Gin and Vodka Association, in 1730 London has over 7,000 spirit stores and gin was sold cheaper than beer. The abuse of alcohol by the poor became a major issue in London. In 1736, the gin Act was issued, which made gin prohibitively expensive. A license to retain gin cost £50 and duty was raised. Within six years of the Act, only two distillers took out licenses and gin production rose by almost 50 percent. The Gin Act was reissued in 1742 with reasonable excise duties and a new policy, which still exists today.
To compete with 45,000 beer shops in London selling free licensing beer at cozy homes, spirit retailers created 'gin palaces,' first appeared around 1830. The gin palace was large and was luxuriously furnished. By the 1850s, there were about 5,000 palaces in London.
During the first cocktail age in the United States, gin became a fashionable drink, giving its subtle flavor that made it easy to mix cocktails such as martini and cosmopolitan. By 1951, the Bartenders' Guild filed 7,000 cocktails and gin was one of the most significant base spirits.
Anchor Junipero Gin - Premium gin produced in California by Anchor Steam Brewery. Distilled from a blend juniper berried and other botanicals.
Bafferts Gin - Triple-distilled with four botanicals in England. Result is crisp and light, ideal gin for Martinis.
Beefeater - Traditional London Dry Gin, first produced in 1820 by a pharmacist, James Burrough. He believed he could create the perfect blend of botanical and grains to produce a distinctively bold, full-bodies and armatic gin.
Bellringer Gin - 94.4 proof English gin.
Bombay - Distilled with eight botanicals, popular among serious gin drinkers.
Bombay Sapphire - One of the fastest growing premium gins, distilled with 10 botanicals.
Bombadier Military Gin - Only British military gin available in the United States.
Boodles British Gin - 90.4 proof gin with oily finish, produced in England.
Boomsma Jonge Genevere Gin - Produced in Holland, perfect for a simple gin and tonic.
Burnett's Crown Select Gin - Produced by America's Heaven Hill Distillery.
Cadenhead's Old Raj Gin - 110 proof gin.
Citadelle - Distilled with 19 botanicals in France. This premium gin gives heavy body and a long finish.
Cork Dry - Made in Ireland.
Cascade Mountain Gin - Hand-picked wild juniper berries go into the gin, distilled in Oregon. Perfect premium gin for an elegant martinis.
Gilbey's London Dry Gin - Produced in the United States, distilled with prices and dried herbs, giving medium light body with high aromas.
Greenall's Original Gin - Greenall's is made at Warrington distillery where Bombay Sapphire is produced. After over 200 years, it still remains independent family produced gin.
Demrak Amsterdam - Distilled five times with 17 botanicals.
Dirty Olives - Distilled three times, infused with green olive juice from Spain along with other botanicals.
Hamptons Gin - Distilled in the United States, light and fruity nose with juniper notes.
Hendrick's Gin - Infused with cucumber, coriander, citrus peel and rose petals, handcrafted in Scotland.
Juniper Green Organic Gin - First gin made from all organic ingredients in England with four botanicals including sage.
Leyden Dry Gin - Distilled three times in small batches, twice in column stills then in a pot still.
Plymouth - First distilled in 1793, Plymouth Dry is crisp and aromatic.
Quintessential - Produced by Greenall's, gives soft and smooth taste.
Schlichte GinUrbrannt - German style premium gin.
Seagram's Extra Dry Gin - Aged in charred oak barrels, giving a rich flavor balanced with aromatics.
Tanqueray - 94.6 proof, distilled in Finsbury, England.
Tanqueray Malacca - Triple distilled in small batches, producing highly aromatic gin. It tastes slightly spicier than Tanqueray.
Tanqueray No. 10 - Distilled with fresh botanicals, not dries.
Van Gogh Gin - Dutch gin produced with 10 botanicals in small batches.
Triple distilled, twice in column stills then in a traditional pot still.