Gin is a distilled alcoholic beverage that derives its predominant flavor from juniper berries, giving it its distinctive taste.
It’s heavily regulated around the world, and in order to be classed as ‘gin’, the distilled liquor must be at least 40% ABV or 80 proof.
Gin today is broader than it has been in the past, and the industry has opened up to new styles and flavors of gin. In this article we explore the four main types of gin.
After juniper, gin tends to be flavored with botanical/herbal notes, hints of spice, floral or fruit flavors or often a combination of all of these.
These are the most most popular varieties of gin
- London Dry Gin
- Plymouth Gin
- Navy Strength Gin
- Old Tom Gin
London Dry Gin
London dry gin is considered the original gin, and it’s also the variety with the most juniper-forward flavor.
That said, some London dry gins steep fresh citrus peels or dried peels before distillation, which gives them a bright, citrus flavor that works extremely well in a martini.
The amount of flavors, coloring, and sugar that distillers are allowed to use for London dry gin is regulated, however.
Plymouth gin has a sweeter taste than London dry gin and must be produced in Plymouth, England to earn the name.
Today, there is only one brand of Plymouth gin which is produced by the Black Friars Distillery – the only remaining gin distillery in Plymouth.
Navy Strength Gin
Yep, you guessed it – this gin is strong. It’s 57% ABV or roughly 110 proof, so if you like your martinis extra strong, this is the type of gin to go for.
Allegedly, this type of gin is stronger as ships didn’t have a lot of space to store liquor, so by increasing the strength of the gin sailors would get drunk faster on a smaller quantity. Win-win!
Old Tom Gin
Old Tom is good for people who aren’t gin-lovers by nature, as it’s sweeter than the other varieties of gin, and its botanical notes aren’t as strong.
Old Tom gin is regularly used in gin cocktails as it blends well with other ingredients, so this is better if you want a more subtle tasting gin.
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