Spotlight on Gin: Some New Favorites Straight Up Cocktails

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

As we’ve mentioned before here at the Kitchn, gin’s been making quite a splash lately. Long edged out by vodka, this crystal clear, juniper-berry-flavored grain spirit is now reclaiming its rightful place in the spirit world.

While U.S. liquor store shelves were once limited to basics such as Gordon’s and Beefeater, and premiums such as Bombay Sapphire and Tanqueray, refreshing new choices have started to turn up from unexpected places (France, Scotland).

We want to hear your favorites. Here are a few of the newer gins on the block we’ve sampled recently:

DH Krahn. This small-batch American gin is a surprising standout. Clean, exceptionally smooth, and well-rounded, it’s flavored with the botanicals juniper, coriander, orange, grapefruit, and lemon, with an added touch of ginger. At a mellow 80 proof, it’s free of the harsh bite of many gins. A new American upstart.

Hendrick’s. There’s been quite a bit of talk about this one in particular here at The Kitchn – for good reason. This delicate Scottish-made gin is first instilled with coriander, juniper, and citrus peel, then infused with cucumber and rose. Light and ethereal, this gin really shines in a Martini garnished with a thin cucumber slice.

Bulldog. Dark and squat with a spiked collar, the bottle’s a real attention-getter. In addition to juniper, this gin is flavored with poppy, lotus leaves, and dragon eye (a cousin to the lychee fruit that carries some fanciful health – and potency – claims). A good, solid, muscular London dry gin.

G’Vine. A small-batch French gin made with a neutral grape spirit and then flavored with the flower of the Ugni-blanc green grape. Delicate and floral, it’s a smooth, accessible gin that works nicely with fruit juices and garnishes.

Plymouth. An old classic that’s been making a timely comeback. Produced in Plymouth, England since 1793, it has a slightly sweeter and rounder taste than London dry gin. Clean and well balanced, it’s a versatile player, and has recently become our go-to brand. Makes a mighty fine Martini – or Gibson.

What’s your favorite gin?

(Image: Nora Maynard)