GSN Review: Tanqueray No. Ten Gin

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Handcrafted in small batches, Tanqueray No. Ten is the first gin distilled using fresh citrus fruits and botanicals, which give it a unique taste. The exact proportions used are a closely guarded secret; only four people in the world know the Tanqueray recipes, which are kept under three locks in a black ledger known as ‘The Bible’.

Tanqueray No. TEN has won numerous awards since its launch in 2000. In 2003 it had unprecedented wins as ‘Best White Spirit’ three times in a row at the San Francisco World Spirits competition leading to the creation of ‘Hall of Fame’, the only gin to receive this accolade.

Tanqueray No. Ten (94.6 proof)
Visual: Clear.
Nose: Transparent, ethereal and delicately mouth-watering. It’s as if the essences of each botanical have been lightly sprayed onto the base spirit.
Taste: Lovely blend of citrus and juniper carefully balanced with more subtle additions to the profile.  One of the few gins that can be enjoyed warm, right out of the bottle.  Summer in a glass.
Finish: Sweet, with hints of lemongrass and fresh spruce.
Overall: One of the world’s greatest gins, hands down.  Bring a case or two if you find yourself stranded on a desert island.  Seriously, this is THE gin.
GSN Rating: A++

For more information go to: Tanqueray

 

Imbibing Mr. Boston: Bloomsbury Cocktail

IMG_4331-800The Bloomsbury is one of my all time favorite gin based cocktails.  It is also one of the few that specifically calls for Peychaud’s bitters.  A radical twist on the Martini, this cocktail is both sweet and highly herbal.  I first encountered it in Robert Hess’ “The Essential Bartender’s Guide”.  I asked Robert for the history behind this drink which he created ten years ago.

“The Bloomsbury was a drink I created for a small cocktail competition that Tanqueray 10 sponsored here in Seattle. It was named Bloomsbury after the name of where Tanqueray was first distilled. I don’t remember much more than that about it.”

Be that as it may, it is one tasty cocktail that everyone should add to their short list.

Bloomsbury
2oz gin
0.5oz licor 43
0.5oz lillet blanc
2 dashes peychaud’s bitters
Garnish: lemon twist

Stir with ice and strain into chilled cocktail glass.  Add lemon twist.

GSN Review: Tanqueray

4dc4e431e8171dd9f58456c4623aefb1With gin making a huge comeback in the cocktail world, we’re seeing more and more prohibition era drinks making their way into trendsetting bars.  TV shows like “Boardwalk Empire” and the upcoming Hollywood film “The Great Gatsby” are giving the 1920’s an air of glamor.  But why is gin (along with whiskey) so identified with the 1920’s era?

Gin has been around for at least four and a half centuries.  Of course, there are many different styles from the malt heavy Dutch Genever to the independent distiller boutique styles coming out in 21st century America.  What we call bathtub gin was pretty much all you could get during prohibition in the 48 states.  Basically it was roughly distilled vodka, cut heavily with water and mixed with gin flavoring.  You could even purchase juniper extract from the Sears catalogue.

However, one of the mainstays has been and continues to be the English Dry style.  Crisp, elegant, refreshing and dry, it epitomizes the type of gin that most cocktail drinkers expect.  One of the best of these gins is Tanqueray which has been around since 1830, but is no longer distilled in England.  Instead, they’ve moved their headquarters to Scotland.  Regardless, their products are the mark of excellence.  Oh, and the unique bottle shape?  It’s design is taken from the ubiquitous cocktail shaker.

Here are a few prohibition era cocktails for you to try.

The Franklin
1.5oz London Dry Gin
1tbsp dry vermouth
2tbsp olive juice ( I use Dirty Sue brand)
2 olives

Fill a mixer with all ingredients including the olives. Cover and shake hard 3 – 4 times. Strain contents of the mixer into the cocktail glass. Garnish with an olive. The Franklin, a dirty martini, is the drink that brought it all back and the cocktail with which FDR celebrated the repeal of Prohibition.

White Lady
1.5oz London Dry Gin
.75oz orange liqueur
.75oz lemon juice

Pour all of the ingredients into a shaker, fill with ice, shake and strain into a chilled coupe glass. Introduced in the late 20’s, The White Lady was born from a drink named “Delilah,” which included crème de menthe. The Savoy’s Harry Craddock replaced it with orange liqueur and it became an instant classic.  In 2013, it is one of the 10 most popular cocktails served around the globe.

Tanqueray (94.6 proof)
Visual: Clear
Nose: Bright high notes of juniper and pine along with citrus, bits of black pepper.
Taste: Intense juniper with a perfect balance of other botanicals and a slightly sweet but dry midrange.  Elegant and very English.
Finish: Lingering notes of talc, ending in an ultra dry finish.
Overall: Perfect in a martini, and subdued enough to mix well with juices, and liqueurs.
GSN Rating: A

Tanqueray No. 10 (94.6 proof)
Visual: Clear
Nose: Darker and more verdant than regular Tanqueray, with a fresh quality that is unique amongst gins.
Taste: Softer than Tanqueray, yet more citrus forward and spicy.  Tasty on its own, but exceptional as the base spirit in any cocktail.
Finish: Lingering sweet notes with more fresh spruce.
Overall: A world-class spirit that defines the gin category.  Every cocktail is lifted to a higher level with Tanqueray 10.
GSN Rating: A+

Tanqueray Rangpur (82.6 proof)
Visual: Clear
Nose:  Lots of lime on the nose, with only the slightest tinge of juniper.
Taste: Very light and smooth, akin to a lime vodka.  The lime is natural and not bitter.  Refreshing and reminiscent of summer.
Finish: The lime flavor goes on and on.
Overall: A great gin for a G&T or sipping on the rocks.  The lime will overwhelm most gin based cocktails, so keep this for special occasions.
GSN Rating: B

For more information go to: Tanqueray