What is the gin to rule them all?
October 16, 2009 6:11 AM   Subscribe

What is - in your opinion - the gin to rule them all? On a related note: Fruity, flowery, french gin I had that one night?

I'm looking for a specific gin I had a few years ago - it was a french product I consumed in France and it had a distinctive fruity/herby note to it that made for a really good gin tonic.
posted by mathiu to Food & Drink (34 answers total) 45 users marked this as a favorite
Was it Citadelle?

In a related AskMe, I mentioned Sipsmith Gin (which I haven't yet had, but which sounds fun to try).
posted by MuffinMan at 6:17 AM on October 16, 2009

I really like Plymouth Gin both professionally and personally.

Less of a juniper *BAM* hit to the nose than some of your London Drys, it's an excellent gin that mixes extremely well, but is is still pleasant on its own. Nice floral overtones.

Imbibe Magazine recently did an article on gin.
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 6:23 AM on October 16, 2009

Best answer: Or perhaps G'Vine?
posted by carmicha at 6:23 AM on October 16, 2009

Best answer: Hendricks is pretty great. Rose and cucumber, rather than juniper.
posted by electroboy at 6:26 AM on October 16, 2009 [7 favorites]

Best answer: Citadelle is great, but asking for the "gin to rule them all" is a big question! Is it for martinis? If so, the best I've ever had is London No. 1. I can't seem to find it on line (this is not the same) so maybe they've stopped making it. I remember a plain bottle with a black and white label. I also enjoy Plymouth, and Tanqueray 10 is quite lovely. Our everyday drinking gin is Beefeater (really does make a fine martini), and the new Beefeater 24 is pretty delightful.

I find Citadelle best suited to gin and tonics (with other super-flowery gins like Bulldog, regular Tanqueray, Bombay Sapphire, and Hendricks--though Hendricks makes a fine Gibson). I'm extraordinarily picky about my martinis however. And if it's not Noilly-Prat, I don't want to even hear about it.

Anyways...you may well be thinking of Citadelle. You'd probably also enjoy Bulldog. Happy gin times!
posted by Go Banana at 6:41 AM on October 16, 2009 [1 favorite]

I'm not much a of gin drinker, but it's my husband's favorite spirit and he swears by Bombay Sapphire.
posted by AnyGuelmann at 6:45 AM on October 16, 2009

I find Bombay Sapphire to be one of the more fragrant mainstream gins.
posted by Frasermoo at 6:48 AM on October 16, 2009

Best answer: Not French, but from your description you will love Bluecoat. It's turned me from a gin-naysayer to a gin-evangelist.

It's more citrus-y and herb-y and not so over-powerfully juniper-y.
posted by desuetude at 7:04 AM on October 16, 2009

Among others, Hendricks & Ransom Old Tom are superb. but if you're looking for just one that will work in almost anything and perfectly, you're looking for Plymouth.
posted by kickingtheground at 7:06 AM on October 16, 2009 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I absolutely love Boodles, but mostly because it isn't nearly as juniper-y as most gins I'd tried before. Nthing Hendricks for deliciousness as well.
posted by juliplease at 7:12 AM on October 16, 2009

I'm pretty sure that Bombay Saphire will be the death of me.
posted by cp7 at 7:42 AM on October 16, 2009

Best answer: It's hard to find outside of the west coast, but Aviation is a fantastic gin, especially for its floral side. I've only had Martin Miller's once, but I remember it having great orange and floral notes, too, and will be more generally available. Hendrick's is, as everyone said, amazing, but it has the downside that you can't treat it like any old gin in mixed drinks. It's good on its own and in G&Ts, but when mixing you have to take care to work with the cucumber or else drinks will fall flat.

Basically, there is no gin to rule them all. I usually try to keep two gins around in my home bar, one for generic gin mixing (Boodles works well here) and one for drinks where the gin needs to sing (Aviation or Hendrick's are good here). If I had a real income, I'd have a few more when I wanted to pull drinks in slightly different directions (more citrus, more juniper, etc).
posted by Schismatic at 7:46 AM on October 16, 2009 [1 favorite]

I havnt sampled too many types of gin but I really do love bombay saphire.

It definately wouldnt be the right gin to play gin bucket with though.
posted by nuke3ae at 7:58 AM on October 16, 2009

My current favourite martini gin is Martin Miller's, which makes a stonker, especially now that I've procured some Vya vermouth.

Tonic gins are different, though, and Citadelle sounds like the one you're after.
posted by holgate at 8:01 AM on October 16, 2009

Thirding Martin Miller. Cucumberey goodness. Yum.
posted by maniactown at 8:05 AM on October 16, 2009

I've also heard good things about Blue Coat from the booziest of my friends, and it takes a lot for her to suggest a gin. She's more of a whiskey/scotch/wine/beer/tequila drinker. Don't even mention vodka.
posted by hue at 8:08 AM on October 16, 2009

My vote goes to Hendrick's
posted by ghharr at 8:14 AM on October 16, 2009

Hendrick's. I don't even really like gin, and I think this stuff is delicious. Perhaps my opinion is not really worthwhile because I'm not ordinarily a gin drinker, but all my gin-soaked friends love the hell out of it too.
posted by solipsophistocracy at 8:14 AM on October 16, 2009

posted by solipsophistocracy at 8:14 AM on October 16, 2009 [1 favorite]

Best answer: My favorite gin is Junipero, but the best part of liking gin is trying a bunch of different ones!
posted by mollymayhem at 8:28 AM on October 16, 2009

Strangely, I'm a huge fan of Monopolowa Vienna Dry Gin--it's reasonably priced, and less redolant of too much juniper and rubbing alcohol. Atypical and delicious, but not so cucumber-loving as Hendrick's.
posted by LucretiusJones at 8:52 AM on October 16, 2009

Best answer: Most other gins(See All) taste like swill compared

Behold!!!!! Jackelope Gin. A Colorado treasure brought to you by the same folks who make SKA beers. Also very very good stuff.
posted by Gravitus at 9:21 AM on October 16, 2009

Hendricks. Oh yes.
posted by ms.v. at 10:01 AM on October 16, 2009

Junipero. Neat. Oh yes, yes. Not french, just gorgeous.
posted by buzzv at 10:01 AM on October 16, 2009

Check out this review of a few top gin options. I agree with the reviewer completely.
posted by cp7 at 10:13 AM on October 16, 2009

nthing Bombay Sapphire. Clean, fresh, aromatic, delicious.
posted by dephlogisticated at 10:48 AM on October 16, 2009

I wouldn't say I'm an expert, but it's hard to argue with Hendrick's, Bluecoat, Bombay Sapphire, or Tanqueray 10. Roughly in that order.
posted by willpie at 10:57 AM on October 16, 2009

Best answer: I'm a fan of Hendrick's gin as well. I dislike overly juniper-y gins - my favorite gin & tonic is Hendrick's, tonic, and cucumber instead of lime. I also like Bulldog and Plymouth.

I recently tried a pretty interesting gin that I haven't seen mentioned here, though: Whitley Neill Gin. It's made from the fruit of Baobab trees and gooseberries. Very nice.

I'm totally trying out Martin Miller and Aviation gins - they sound up my alley.

As a side note, I recently tried infusing Plymouth gin with lavender after having some at a great bar here in NYC called Employees Only. It's really easy (put lavender in gin bottle, leave a few days, remove, voilĂ !) and lovely.
posted by jacquilinala at 11:51 AM on October 16, 2009

Response by poster: G'Vine it was - thanks to carmicha for the find.

All the suggestions look like I'm in for some liver-distress. Mollymayham says it perfectly: but the best part of liking gin is trying a bunch of different ones.

That'll be fun.
posted by mathiu at 1:01 PM on October 16, 2009

I went to gin tasting a few years ago at Christ Church as part of the Oxford Literary Festival, and had several amazing and unusual gins (names now forgotten, unfortunately) but it seems like it is an annual feature of the festival programme, highly recommended for any gin fans in the area.
posted by janecr at 3:21 PM on October 16, 2009

To add in my favorite: 209 . I'm also a fan of Junipero and Aviation.
posted by gingerbeer at 3:35 PM on October 16, 2009

Nthing Bombay Sapphire.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 8:51 AM on October 17, 2009

I started off on Bombay Sapphire (which is very nice indeed on a hot day with a dollop of tonic and a wedge of lime), but am slowly moving toward Tanqueray Ten (much much smoother than Bombay) and Hendricks.

But mollymayhem has basically nailed it.
posted by The Shiny Thing at 4:29 PM on October 19, 2009

North Shore is the best gin I've ever tasted.
posted by missmobtown at 3:46 PM on October 24, 2009

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