We’ve compiled a list of the best European Gins of today. Here is what we’ve come up with. Cheers!
The Monkey 47 is a gin that apes no others. Monty Collins discovered the Black Forest in the War. He went on to build Berlin Zoo, where he sponsored an egret monkey called Max. Why 47? Because it has forty-seven botanicals.
A chameleon of a gin. Add tonic and its PH changes, and it turns from blue to pink. Made with a pea( used in Thai cooking) by Antonio Cuco and his stills “The Two Minions” in Alentejo with a Mahe bottle shaped like a Bockbeutel wine bottle. No gimmick.
A gin or two made in Cognac. Jean-Sebastiane Robicquet’s unique, aromatic, finessed, G-Vine Floraison Gin, and elegant premium Gin de France are made at Maison Villevert with vine blossoms. As well as Chinese licorice, Guatemalan green cardamom, and Nigerian ginger. The vine blossom harvest lasts only five days every June. Every Ugni Blanc blossom is hand-picked. www.g-vine.com
Produced by Maison Ferrand, Citadelle Gin is named after the only Royal Distillery built in Dunkirk in the eighteenth century. Made at Chateau de Bonbonnet, using a traditional Charentaise pot, distillation over an open flame. The Gin Reserve is aged in Cognac casks, minimizing the citrus flavor.
A Swiss gin “rested” in Vermouth casks. Oliver and Iris Menne-Ullrich’s Liquid Spirits Distillery in Basel makes gin in hip flash shaped bottles. Their 43% ABV Vermouth Cask Finish is made from juniper, barberry, laurel fruit, citrus and sweet orange peel, fresh grapefruit, cardamom, hay flower, clover blossoms, bee balm, verbena, hyssop, camomile, black currant leaves, orris root, carline thistle root, galangal, and licorice. The gin is left in Barolo and Cocchi Vermouth barrels from Piedmont. www. www.ngininous.ch
In 1928 Firmin Filliers Dry Gin, a 3rd generation master distiller, created the first Belgian gin recipe used to create Filliers Dry Gin created with 28 different botanicals such as lavender and Belgian hops. This has been relaunched as Tribute Gin by master distillers Pedro Saez del Burgo and Filip Waelkens.
The Dragonfly Cask Gin by Braunstein, Denmark, is brotherly. Brothers Michael and Claus Braunstein started brewing craft beer before discovering whisky on fishing holidays to Scotland. Other spirits like Danica Cask Gin and Dragonfly Gin followed. Made in the port of Kogo.
The Herno Gin from Sweden is a serial award-winning gin. Opening in 2012 in Dala, Herno was the country’s first dedicated gin works. Run by Kierstin and Marit – the two stills run by the founder, master distiller, founder and distiller and Gin Hall of Famer, Jon Hillgren, who makes Navy Strength ( 57%) Gin, Old Tom, and the first gin to be matured in juniper wood.
The Mediterranean Gin Mare is a pan-European gin with basil from Italy, thyme from Turkey, and Arbequina olives from Spain. Made in the fishing village of Vilanova. The juniper comes from Teruel. A true savory and herbal taste of the Mediterranean.
A Gin Masters gold medal-winning gin created by Filippo Previero and made from the countryside in Moncalieri at VII Hills. Ingredients include celery, Roman chamomile, and pomegranate—a creamy artichoke and almond finish.
A couple of Dutch gins. One old and one young. Gin first appeared in Holland/ Netherlands in 1495. It got to England in 1575. Dutch gin is double-distilled, while London Dry is single distilled. Myriam Hendrickx is now a master distiller of Rutte of Dordrecht, which goes back to 1872. Eight generations have made quality premium gins in De Vulkaan since Simon Rutte opened his Doorloopcafe and then a wine shop on the Vriesstraat. The tasting rooms are the family’s old living quarters. The Celery Gin is an old recipe perfect with “Red Snapper” ( the modern gin equivalent of a Bloody Mary). A gin made in a church, Gospel Spirits distills in Jopen’s Hoofddorp church, the oldest church in the Haarlemermeer province of North Holland.