Take your taste buds on a trip around the world with my list of gins from around the world. Following the itinerary of Phileas Fogg in ‘Around the World in 80 Days’, the novel by Jules Verne, I have listed the best gins available in each of the stops he made in his famous around the world trip in 1872.
You don’t need to hustle through 80 days of rail, steamer, elephants and boats like the fictional Phileas Fogg to test out a Gin journey for your taste buds. Covering places like Egypt, India, Singapore, Hong Kong and the United States, I will cover the best gins and cocktails from each stop.
Starting out in London, finding some amazing distilleries is going to be quite easy. Even though the earliest origins of gin come from the middle ages where is was used as an herbal medicine, it has become to be known as ‘The’ British drink. This is mainly down to the Gin Craze in the 18th Century were thanks to unlicensed spirits production Londoners could afford a lot of the beverage.
There is even Mr Foggs Gin Parlours throughout London, the London Gin Parlour of the eccentric British adventurer, Phileas Fogg.
58 (43% Vol) is distilled in London’s East End, each batch is hand crafted and produced in massive copper stills.
Containing; Juniper, Coriander Seed, Orris Root (brings a floral, liquorice flavour), Angelica, Cubeb Pepper, Sicilian Lemon, Pink Grapefruit, Bergamot and Bourbon Vanilla.
Recommended to be served with a Mediterranean Tonic (I recommend fevertree) and a slice of Pink Grapefruit.
Also, this is a really good bottle to buy for someone’s 58th birthday!
This is stocked in Aldi (the 70cl bottle), so you might be able to pick it up at a good price, otherwise, this link to buy online is below *it’s only a 50 cl bottle on Amazon
Or, if you want to try the Fifty Eight Navy Strength version (57% Vol), click here.
Are you ready for a unique drink? Half Hitch (40% Vol) is distilled in Camden and uses black tea, wood and bergamot to stand out from the many other distillers in London.
Named after the strong rope knot used to moor up barges along Camden Lock. Half Hitch botanicals contain; Black Tea Leaves, Bergamot, Wood, Black Pepper and Hay on top of the classic gin botanicals.
Serve with orange peel to bring out the complex flavours.
It has a woody spice and touches of bitter lemon to the flavour. If you love a drink, then you really need to try Half Hitch, it does a mean G&T but also can be drank neat.
As one reviewer said, ‘This Gin tastes like London’. Which could be taken as either a good thing of a bad thing depending on your experiences with our Capital. However, I have tried it and that review was certainly meant as a good compliment.
The City of London Distillery is quite the place if you get the chance to go, they also offer Distillery Tours and Tasting experiences, a must if you’re in London.
City of London Dry (41.3% vol) contains Juniper, Angelica, Liquorice and Coriander Seed and the rest seems to be kept secret.
It’s a clean simple tipple, with subtle notes of violet and a peppery spice after tasting. Serve with tonic and a slice of lemon.
Fogg departed London and took a boat then rail to Paris, France. France is best known for its wine and Cognac, however in the past few years some Gin Distilleries have popped up in France.
I could only find one distillery in Paris, and the rest are spread-out throughout France.
The first distillery to open in Paris for over a century produces this First Batch Gin. Using a grape base Distillerie De Paris (43% Vol) is a unique blend of all things French.
Truly original, the grape spirit base includes Coriander, Bergamot, Juniper, Oolong Tea, Jasmine and Lavender.
This original recipe is nicely paired within Indian Tonic and a wedge of Pink Grapefruit.
Buy from Fortnum & Mason *it’s only a 50 cl bottle
This is one of the most popular French Gins and can often be found on the shelves of UK supermarkets. Distilled in the Charente region, G’Vine (40% Vol) combines 10 botanicals to provide a smooth yet powerful drink. Possibly the nicest, yet cheapest and easiest to find grape based Gins in the UK, if you buy this you’re in for a treat.
They have carefully selected 10 botanicals including Juniper, Green Cardamom, Cubeb Berries, Liquorice, lime, Coriander, Quassia Amara (known as bitter-ash), Nutmeg, Ginger and Vine Flower.
The first ever Gin I have come across that recommends garnishing with fresh white Grapes.
Delicate, floral, with a spicy warmth. If you’re not convinced, just click on the button below and read the reviews, except for the reviewer who bemoaned ‘Tastes nothing like Vodka!’ everyone else is recommending this.
Distilled in Dijon, Gabriel Boudier distillery was founded in 1909. This Gin is based on a recipe found in their archives, East meets West with Saffron (40% Vol) as it was a result of the alliance between Indian = East (Saffron) and Great Britain = West (Gin).
Not as much Saffron in this spirit as you’d expect looking at the colour. The botanicals include Juniper, Angelica Seed, Coriander, Orange Bitter, Lemon and of course, Saffron which gives it a delicate spiciness.
It tastes amazing with Ginger Ale, and a slice of orange. It’s smooth and mellow and has a tart sweetness to it.
Or you could try this in a Saffron inspired cocktail. The Boudier Distillery recommend using Saffron Gin in their ‘Saffron Rising’ Cocktail.
- 75ml of Saffron Gin
- 25ml of Triple Sec
- 1 tbsp of fresh lemon juice
- 1 tsp of cane sugar
- Some drops of Orange bitter
Shake everything and serve in a glass beforehand cooled.
Created in 1996 by French distiller Alexander Gabriel, Citadelle (44% Vol) comes with a whopping 19 botanicals! Winning many awards in the 20 plus years, from ‘Spirit of the Year’ in 2017 and ‘World’s Best Gin’ in London 2016.
So, what are all those 19 botanicals? Juniper, Coriander, Cardamom, Angelica, Cumin, Nutmeg, Almonds, Paradise Seeds, Liquorice, Cubeb, Savory, Cinnamon, Star Anise, Blackcurrant, Iris, Violet, Fennel, Orange Zest and Lemon.
With all those botanicals, its best to serve this simply with a light tonic and a lemon peel.
On Amazon it currently has all 5-star reviews, which is rare. Some are stating it tastes like no other gin they have tried, and now they won’t buy another Gin, they only buy Citadelle now. This is a special occasion drink for sure and will be a good option for your around the world with Gin journey.
Onto Turin, Italy went Fogg and with it we are now getting some delicious craft gins some with Amlfi Lemons, and basil garnishes. Italy is the unconfirmed official birth place of Gin, invented in the 11th century by Monks who added juniper berries to their spirits on the Salerno Coast. I could only find one distillery near Turin and the rest are from Northern Italy.
Malfy (41% Vol) pays homage to the Italian Monks who invented Gin. Their distillery is in Moncalieri, just outside Turin. Fogg may have been sipping on their tipple when he made his epic journey to go around the world in 80 days.
The Originale Gin contains: Juniper, Coriander, Cassia Bark, Angelica Root, Orris Root, Orange Peel, Grapefruit Peel and Lemon Peel from Amalfi. Blended with Pure Spring Water from Monviso Mountain.
Malfy is a classic dry gin, that is perfect for a traditional G&T, or would be perfect in an Italian Martini:
Shake Malfy over ice with a splash of (Italian) Vermouth, serve in a martini glass with a lemon strip.
The Spirit of the Italian Riviera, O’ndina (45% Vol) is the second on my list with 19 botanicals. Created by Gruppo Campari, from a small batch distillery you can sip this in a G&T and dream of Italy.
Including Juniper, Basil, Lemon, Orange, Orris Root, Liquorice, Sage, Marjoram, Thyme, Fennel and the rest are remaining a secret.
Truly delicious, a more savoury gin that will pair well with a basil garnish. If you dislike basil, try a sliver of cucumber to bring out the flavoursome combination of those botanicals.
As its made by the maker that brought us Campari, it seems obvious that this gin would make a wonderful Negroni.
- 25ml of O’ndina Gin
- 25ml of Campari
- 25ml of Sweet Vermouth
Shake everything gently and serve in a glass with plenty of ice.
Moving further down southern Italy, Fogg found himself at the port of Brindisi. Awaiting to board the steamer ship Mongolia, he may have passed his time sipping some of the best Italian gins. Unfortunately, most of the gin distilleries in Italy are in the north, but I’m sure Fogg wouldn’t have minded.
Distilled in the Antica Disilleria Quaglia in Rome, Gin Del Professore Madame (43% Vol) contains cinnamon, vanilla and wild rose which all sound divine to me. This sweet spiced spirit is unique, warming and savoury which becomes a truly gorgeous sipping drink.
This Gin is full of flavour, from Juniper, Cardamom, Cinnamon, Vanilla, Wild Rose, Nutmeg, Cassia and honey.
Smooth and elegant, I’d say this gin is an amazing find. If you like floral gins, this is the one for you.
Serve simply over ice and sip while reading and just enjoy all the complex flavours that seem to complement one another perfectly.
A classic Italian Gin distilled on Panarea Island, created in 1832 this gin is inspired by a Sicilian family recipe. Panarea Island (44% Vol) is a premium drink using the botanicals which can be found on the small island.
Most of the botanicals are a well-kept secret, some have been revealed to be; Juniper, Myrtle and Berries. This is the first gin on this list to have Myrtle, so what does myrtle taste like? The seeds are deep purple with juniper and rosemary flavouring.
Garnish with rosemary to bring out the myrtle botanicals, with a Mediterranean tonic.
It took Fogg 4 days to travel from Italy, to Suez in Egypt on the Mongolia Steamer. In Egypt, I doubt he could have found a local Gin to drink, but they did import it back then.
One of the main ingredients of Gin is Juniper Berries, which are not known to grow in Egypt. Juniper Berries have been found in a lot of ancient Egyptian tombs, including Tutankhamun. It is believed they were imported from Greece and the Egyptians believed the berries increased stamina.
Currently, there is only one distillery in Egypt. As Al Ahram Brewery holds the monopoly in Egypt, we only have one Egyptian Gin to try.
Butler’s (40% Vol) was launched in 2004. It’s a light crisp London Dry. It’s a very hard drink to get hold of, and only one website seems to be able to deliver it to the UK.
Butler’s botanicals are kept firmly behind closed doors and its quite hard to find a review of it. I’d say your best chance of tasting this Gin is to visit Egypt itself.
Apparently, it makes a good G&T and is suitable for cocktails.
Egyptian Cocktail – Empty Nester from Riverside in Cairo
You could try an Egyptian Cocktail to help follow Fogg’s journey around the world in 80 gins.
This Cocktail is from Riverside in Cairo, which offers stunning views of the Nile at night.
Empty Nester Cocktail:
- 25ml London Dry Gin
- 25ml Guava Juice
- A squeeze of lemon
Shake the ingredients in a shaker and pour into a tumbler with lots of ice and top up with tonic.
Yemen is an officially dry country, except for Aden and Sana. However, there are no distilleries in Yemen.
I thought this leg of the journey would be a good time to introduce some ‘non-alcoholic’ gins.
Seedlip offers 3 gin inspired non-alcoholic spirits, their Spice variation seems to be the most popular and is perfect to pair with Yemen cuisine.
Seedlip Spice 94 is made from 6 carefully selected botanicals: Clove, Lemon, Cardamom, All Spice, Oak and Cascarilla.
Serve with Indian Tonic water with a wedge of pink grapefruit.
A perfect option for people who don’t like alcohol or want to cut down their drinking. Ultimately its spirit without the calories, or the hangover.
It is a bitter drink, which makes it feel more ‘grown-up’ and has strong cardamom taste.
If I said Bombay and Gin, most of you will ultimately think of Bombay Sapphire, named after the popularity of Gin in India during the British Raj. When introduced to India, they would mix the Gin with quinine, a bitter medicine that was used to treat malaria. They then began to add water, sugar and lime to the mixture to make it more palatable, and the G&T was born (Thank you India!).
Fogg would have defiantly been able to get his hands-on G&T while passing through Bombay, India is currently the 5th largest market for gin in the world.
There is currently just one manufacturer in India which is NAO Spirits who produce
- Hapusa Himalayan Dry Gin
- Greater Than London Dry Gin
These are not currently available in the UK, but according to the Gin Guild, they will be coming to our shores, so we will be able to try the first Indian produced gins soon.
So, instead, we need to have Indian inspired tipples for this leg of Fogg’s around the world journey:
This stunning bottle already has my taste buds wanting. Known for their teas, The East India Company has now created a luscious drink! East India Gin (42% Vol) recipe took two years to perfect. In Chapter 9 of Around the World in 80 days, The East Indian Company is frequently mentioned.
Containing 12 botanicals inspired by the long trade journeys through India; Juniper, Nutmeg, Ginger, Long Pepper, Orris Root, Angelica, Sweet Orange, Liquorice, Amchur Powder, Green Cardamom, Galangal and Coriander.
This is a fresh drink with a warm subtle spice. A fantastic treat which is perfect with Indian Tonic and a slice of lemon.
For a true Indian experience, as a little mango puree in with your G&T to help you daydream about Indian sunsets.
We can’t cover Bombay without mentioning one of the most popular Gin’s in the UK which was named after the place. ‘Bombay’ coming from the birth place of Gin and Tonic, and ‘Sapphire’ from the Star of Bombay, a 182-caret Sapphire originating from Sri Lanka.
Bombay Sapphire (40% Vol) was the tipple my dad drank and was my first ever taste of Gin. Because of that it will always remain one of my favourites. A few times I have stated to my friends that I would be able to recognise Bombay Sapphire in a blind taste test, each time they call BS, and each and every time I have proved them wrong and come out a victor.
Containing 10 botanicals, which they have always displayed proudly along the sides if their iconic blue bottle. Bombay Sapphire includes Juniper, Cubeb Berries, Angelica Root, Almonds, Coriander, Cassia Bark, Orris Root, lemon Peel, Grains of Paradise and Liquorice.
It’s a clean gin with a lovely blend of flavours perfect for a simple G&T.
Fogg travelled by rail from Bombay to Allahabad, but found that he was 50 miles short and stuck in Kholby, luckily help was at hand and he travelled the remaining miles by Elephant!
Pineapples are abundant in this region, so it’s a must to promote one of the Gins I’ve been looking forward to testing the most:
As a big fan of Pineapple Upside-Down Cake, which this Gin tastes of, I need a full bottle of this to myself. Brought to you by ‘That Boutique-y Gin Company’ Spit-Roasted Pineapple (40% Vol) is a must for those of you that like Flavoured Liqueurs.
It smells like, pineapple fritters and pineapple upside-down cake.
Tastes like a mix of sweet and sour pineapples with a rich caramel flavour.
Sit back and dream of riding elephants through India while sipping this tropical drink served simply over ice.
If drinking it neat is too much, pair with ginger beer, it may sound like an odd pairing, but you’ll be amazed at how well they go together.
*This is only a 50cl bottle
Kolkata (formally Calcutta, when did that happen?) in India, was the place whose rulers drank gin and tonic at sunset. With this in mind, our last Indian inspired Gin of this leg of the Journey is Indian Summer.
A warm rich gin, containing saffron which gives it a soft yellow hue. Indian Summer (46% Vol) is perfect for those long sunny days, spent with friends and an abundance of tonic.
Containing Angelica, Almonds, Coriander Seed, Cassia, Juniper Berries, Lemon Peel, Liquorish Root, Saffron, Orris Root and Orange Peel.
Goes well with a cucumber garnish, and Indian Tonic water of course.
Stronger than other gins, but with the right mix of botanicals and the lovely saffron coming through, this works really well. It’s a very smooth, refreshing treat.
On the Rangoon Steamer, Fogg headed towards Singapore, whilst onboard Fogg and Passepartout shared a Gin to celebrate meeting up again.
Singapore has many Gin bars now, Atlas Bar (nick named the Batman Building) has over 1000 Gins on their menu, a must visit if you ever find yourself in that part of the world.
There is only one Distillery in Singapore, Paper Lanterns who created Sichuan Pepper Gin, the rest of the ones on my list for Singapore are inspired by their abundance of herbs an spices.
This rice-based gin is distilled in Singapore, with hints of plum, lavender and a hint of Sichuan Pepper. Paper Lantern Sichuan (40 Vol) is every bit a taste of Singapore that it could be.
Containing Juniper, Pine, Cloves, Plum, Lavender, Makhwaen, Lemon Grass, Sichuan Pepper, Galangal and Ginger.
These Asian botanicals contribute to an aromatic drink balanced with a spicy base and clean ginger and honey aftertaste.
Serve with Indian Tonic and a thin slice of Ginger.
Distilled in Manchester but inspired by South East Asia, Tarsien (45% Vol) packs a powerful punch.
The Asian inspired botanicals include: Calamansi, Kampot Pepper, Thai Sweet Basil and Galangal. Distilled alongside seven traditional botanicals.
This is a clean, yet complex gin, combining all those Asian botanicals making it a perfect drink to sip away at while reliving Fogg’s journey through Singapore.
Recommended to be served with tonic and fresh ginger and a slice of lime with lots of ice.
Hong Kong, China
Up to Hong Kong we go, were Bars are aplenty. In Hong Kong, Fogg helped himself to yet another gin in a Tavern Den which was stocked with jugs of Gin, Brandy and other alcoholic spirits. Most of the people in the Tavern were happily puffing on opium pipes too. I’ve only listed the best Hong Kong inspired gins below and no opium stocklists will be named.
Currently there is only the Hong Kong Distillery making Handover Gin which isn’t available in the shops yet.
Yet there is 49 Distilleries in China but not one of them sell in the UK, mainly due to Hong Kong top bars being stocked full of British, Germany, French and Australian gins, so I have named the best Chinese inspired gins available to the UK here:
The Tangerine Twist comes from the Chinese Mandarin Oranges used within the distilling process of this spirit. Skully Tangerine Twist (41.8% Vol) is a refreshing tangy tipple with a touch of oriental flavours, best to be enjoyed on a long summer day.
Some of the botanicals used are Juniper, Tangerine, Sweet Orange, Lemon, Lime, Orris Root, Vanilla, Cardamom, Coriander, Liquorice and Angelica.
Produced in the Netherlands, but combining all the flavours of China, this fruity drink is perfect for cocktails, especially French 75’s.
The inclusion of the Sencha and Chinese Green Tea makes this different from the classic Beefeater gins. With grapefruit peel and a unique Chinese aroma, you will want to book a visit to Hong Kong right away.
Created due to Desmond Payne (Master Distiller) trip to Japan were quinine (the main ingredient in tonic) being banned, Desmond would mix the original beefeater gin with chilled green tea.
Beefeater 24 (45% Vol) contains Juniper, Sencha, Chinese Green Tea, Grapefruit, Lemon peel, Almond, Seville Orange peel, Coriander Seed, Orris Root, Liquorice, Angelica Root and Angelica Seed.
Serve with tonic and a red grapefruit wedge.
In Shanghai we can find a few distilleries, none which currently deliver to the UK. I will be updating this post as soon as they do.
One of the main craft gin makers is Crimson Pangolin, which was founded in 2017.
This sweet and sour gin is inspired by Chinese cuisine. A sweet, but fresh fruity flavoured spirit has a lovely tartness, and with the juniper adding just a hint of spiciness.
Zymurgorium Mandarin Dynasty (40% Vol) botanicals are all sourced from China and have been kept secret.
This is a sipping drink and served simply over ice will transport you to Shanghai.
The bottle, just screams China and would look good alongside any Gin collection.
From Belgium this yummy pink gin takes its stunning hue from the goji berries in the recipe. Goji Berries being a superfood originating from China where the ancient Chinese doctors prescribed it as medicine to treat sore muscles and protect against illness, makes this spirit well and truly Chinese.
Perfect for a 28th Birthday Present.
Filliers Dry Gin 28 is named after the 28 botanicals they use in all their gins. In their ‘Pink’ version they combine raspberries and goji berries to make a unique awarding winning drink.
With 28 botanicals I’d pair with a light tonic and add some goji berries to garnish.
From Shanghai to Yokohama we go, were the largest ‘chukagai’ or Chinatown can be found, with over 500 shops, restaurants coffee shops and bars.
After Sake (Rice Wine), Gin is the most popular spirit consumed in Japan.
Yokohama even has its own cocktail, called (you guessed it) ‘The Yokohama’.
The ‘Yokohama’ is a blend of Gin, Vodka and Pernod based cocktail with an anise and oriental taste, it was invented by the Mayor of Yokohama.
Shake all the following ingredients:
15ml of Sky Vodka
30ml Freshly Squeezed Orange Juice
15ml Grenadine Syrup
Pour into a chilled Martini Glass
The ultimate Japanese Gin. Distilled by Suntory in Yamazaki and shipped all over the world, Suntory Roku is so popular that you can often find it in our local supermarkets.
Containing six Japanese botanicals, with cherry blossoms, green tea leaves, Sancho pepper and Yazo peel every sip will transport you to Japan.
Suntory Roku (43% Vol) has a complex floral flavour and is very drinkable. With strong citrus and peppery notes, it is best garnished with a sliver of ginger to cut through the sharpness.
A gin that is based on the Sansho Berry, which gives a sweet orange yet warm peppery taste. A delicious drink that you won’t regret buying. It’s smooth and easy to drink.
Kokoro (42% Vol) has the base of Sansho Berries, and then balances this botanical out with Juniper, Lemon Peel, Sweet Orange, Almond, Angelica Root, Liquorice, Savoury and Coriander.
A crisp clean gin that for some reason seems like the perfect Autumn drink. It’s best serves with a sliver of ginger and twist of lemon peel.
This cheeky named Gin by The Lickerish Tooth is perfect for combining the tastes of Japan in a glass. This would be perfect as a funny yet appreciated present for the red-haired person in your life.
This fun bottle would stand out on your Gin Shelf (doesn’t everyone have their own gin shelf?). Including Juniper, Angelica, Liquorice and a lot more botanicals which they’re not telling us about. The Ginger really comes through to give a warming finish.
If you love ginger, add this to ginger ale, if not a simple tonic with a slice of lime will give you a great G&T.
San Francisco, California USA
In the book ’Around the World in 80 Days’ the adventurer Phileas Fogg took 62 days to travel from London, England to San Francisco in 1872. In that time, he had many G&T’s. Gin had been introduced to America around 100 years prior but had never gotten as popular over in the US as it had in England thanks to Gin Craze, luckily in the recent years, it’s been gaining traction and is now more popular that Vodka.
In the UK Quinine is the key ingredient in our Tonic Water, it’s the quinine which gives tonic water its distinctive bitter taste, which pairs well with the juniper in our (and most of the world) gins.
One thing to remember when making a G&T with an American Gin is that it is distilled to pair well with ‘American’ tonic water. In the US quinine has strict limitations, so American tonic water isn’t as bitter, and to add flavour to the tonic, most US tonic makers add high fructose syrup. This has led to an American styled gin which doesn’t have juniper as a dominant flavour to help it pair better with their sweet tonic water.
Just across the San Francisco Bridge you will find Oakland and a little distillery called ‘St. George Spirits’. They offer 3 superb gins, and luckily, they’re available in the UK. You can either buy each one individually, but I recommend their set of 3 pack which contains each gin (45% Vol) in a 20cl bottle for you to try.
St. George Spirits Terroir Gin:
Also referred as the ‘Forest’ drink, as its botanicals are selected from the surrounding groves of the distillery.
With Roasted Coriander Seeds, Douglas Fir, California Bay Laurel and sage. Recommended to serve with a sweet tonic and fresh blueberries or raspberries.
St. George Spirits Botanivore Gin:
Botanivore aka the botanical eater, as its consumed 19 botanicals to come to life. So, what’s in it? Angelica root, bay laurel, bergamot peel, black peppercorn, caraway, cardamom, cilantro, cinnamon, citra hops, coriander, dill seed, fennel seed, ginger, juniper berries, lemon peel, lime peel, orris root, Seville orange peel and star anise!
It’s a unique drink, that’s fresh and clean. Serve with tonic and lime peel to truly allow you to take in all the different flavours.
St. Georges Spirits Dry Rye Gin:
The Gin for Whiskey lovers as it’s a rye-based gin, which couldn’t be more American if it tried. Warm and Spicy, it would be a very suitable drink for a crisp autumn day. It’s something in between a London Dry Gin and a Rye Whiskey.
Pairs well with ginger ale and an apple wedge garnish.
In California’s Sonoma Valley in the winemaking region, you will find 3 Badge Beverage Co which makes their award-winning Uncle Val’s Restorative Gin (45% Vol).
Uncle Val chose the botanicals from his home in Italy, cucumber, lemon, sage and lavender.
Due to the medical properties of the botanicals, lavender promoting calming effects which helps you to sleep, sage helping you feel calmer, it was called ‘Restorative Gin’. I think I will now refer to my drinking, as me having a restorative moment, it sounds much better.
Recommended to be paired with Fevertree Mediterranean Tonic and a slice of cucumber.
Produced in San Francisco Bay, this corn-based gin is distilled 5 times to provide a lot of flavour. The 209 Distillery was named due to the fact it was the 209th registered distillery in the United States.
No. 209 (46% Vol) is their flagship product, promoting the fact that this is a New American Gin, it’s very different to the juniper-heavy based gins from the UK.
Distillery 209 keep their botanicals secret, only noting that they include coriander, citrus, cardamom and juniper.
Just take a look at the amazon reviews and you will see lots of people in the UK are saying that it is their favourite tipple.
As it’s a New American Gin, it pairs better with a sweeter tonic, or if you feel like breaking all the rules lemonade. Garnish with a grapefruit wedge.
ADD ON: if you find that you love No. 209 Gin, try their (very expensive) no. 209 Sauvignon Blanc Barrel Reserve Gin.
Salt Lake City, Utah USA
Salt Lake City is our next stop, were the religious inhabitants make Gin not as popular as other places on the map, but luckily, it’s no Yemen and does have one gin distillery, unfortunately, they don’t sell their Jack Rabbit Gin here in the UK.
We do have one Utah based Gin to report on, with an interesting back story…
The words Mormon and Drag-Diva aren’t usually uttered in the same sentence, but in 1885 Morris Young, who was the 35th child of Brigham Young (the successor of Mormon founder Joseph Smith) was a Drag Queen and an Opera Diva who would secretly perform under the name ‘Madam Pattirini’.
Just as you wouldn’t expect a Mormon to be a Drag Diva in 1885, most wouldn’t expect Utah to be able to make a good gin, and that is why they chose to name the Gin after Madam Pattirini. Just to remind us that sometimes people go against expectations to do what they love and what they are good at.
Madam Pattirini (44% Vol) combines juniper, bergamot, coriander, cardamom, Nigerian ginger and Sicilian lemon. This Gin won the Silver Medal at the Denver International Spirits Competition 2017.
Serve with a cheeky grin on your face (because who doesn’t love a drag diva) and Sicilian Lemon Fevertree and slices of cucumber.
Chicago, Illinois USA
Chicago is often known for its beautiful skyline, deep dished pizza’s and relish topped hotdogs. It’s also hosts an abundance of Gin Bars and a few distilleries. But not many of their gins have made it to our shores.
The one that I think would pair well with a Chicago Hotdog is Hot Sauce Gin!
As a super big fan of anything with Hot Sauce on, or with chilli peppers within, this gin intrigues me.
That Boutique-y Gin Company knocks one out of the park again (were talking about Chicago, so I had to make a baseball reference) with Hot Sauce Gin (46% Vol).
It’s bursting full of Anise, Fennel, Juniper, Green Bell Peppers, Red Chilli Peppers and Peppercorns.
Cut through the spiciness by adding a splash of simple tonic and a full half of a lime.
If the thought of Hot Sauce Gin, left you feeling violated. Try a more traditional drink which is distilled in Chicago. Koval Dry Gin (47% Vol) which has won many awards is contained in a visually stunning contemporary bottle design.
It’s full of botanicals, boasting 13 forest spices, including Juniper, Wildflowers, Citrus and White Pepper.
Our first organic and kosher gin, it is clean and crisp and perfect with just tonic water.
New York USA
In Around the World in 80 days, it is in New York that our protagonist Phileas Fogg finds that he arrived in the City 45 minutes after the boat that was due to take him to Liverpool had left. I suspect he would have taken advantage of what New York had to offer and drown his sorrows in a bar or two. He did manage to bribe his way on to a boat the next day.
New York has a long history of gin making and we have the finest gin New York has to offer.
This is the highest ABV strength gin on our list, it’s 57% Vol and will put hairs on your chest, or make you lose any memories of the night you had drinking it. Distilled in Brooklyn New York at New York Distilling Company it is a powerful gin.
This aromatic craft gin contains Juniper, Cinnamon, Cardamom, Star Anise, Lemon, Orange, Grapefruit Peel and Wild Flower Honey.
Despite the strength, this gin contains bags of flavour, with the honey leaving you with a mellowed aftertaste.
Serve with plenty of Indian Tonic and a slice of pink grapefruit.
Another gin from Brooklyn by New York Distilling Company, Dorothy Parker (44% Vol) was named after the poet and writer who lived in New York. Famous for saying
“I like to have a martini, Two at the very most. After three I’m under the table, after four I’m under my host.”
It is a traditional gin that contains the usual botanicals, with some added twists of Elderberries, Cinnamon and Hibiscus.
The New York Distilling Company recommends using Dorothy Parker to make a Gin Daisy Cocktail which contains:
2 oz Dorothy Parker Gin
1 oz lemon juice
1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp grenadine syrup
Shake all the ingredients together with a handful of ice and pour into a tumbler, garnish with a maraschino cherry and a slice of orange.
This multi awarding winning gin contains hand-cracked juniper berries. If you haven’t actually seen juniper berries, they’re very similar to black pepper corns in shape/texture/size and it seems to me that it would take quite some time to hand-crack enough to make enough gin to ship worldwide.
This makes a bold juniper taste to come through and thanks to hand cut citrus peel (instead of the usual frozen mass-produced peel) it creates a very vibrant gin that will stand out amongst the rest.
Serve with Fevertree Mediterranean Tonic and a wedge of pink grapefruit.
You will find that this is a drink you will keep going back to, it’s a fantastic gin.
Phileas Fogg manages to get to Ireland from New York and lands in Queenstown, near Cork. Ireland was known for its Whisky back then, but they have always been keen to make gin to rival London Dry’s distilleries.
Now Ireland has over 31 distilleries and more are soon to come to be.
This gin is based on curds and whey (yes like the Little Miss Muffet nursey rhyme). This is the only milk gin on the list and is a truly unique and pleasant drink to have. In the world of gins, this one stands out and is one of my favourite tipples.
Bertha’s Revenge (42% Vol) has 18 botanicals, these include; juniper, coriander, bitter orange, grapefruit, sweet orange, childish enthusiasm, lemon, lime, liquorice, orris, angelica, laughter, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, cumin, almond and elderflower making it a complex, yet easy to drink.
It has a smooth, almost creamy feeling and pairs well with a sweeter tonic like Fevertree.
A word of warning before investigating this gin further, their website had sounds of a typewriter that automatically played and had no way of turning the sounds off – which turned me off completely.
However, I will not let it affect my review, even though I think having auto playing videos or music or sounds is one of the worst things a website can do.
Anyway, back to business, Gunpowder Irish Gin is distilled in Drumshanbo, Ireland and includes Meadowsweet as a main botanical as it originates in Drumshanbo.
Drunshanbo Gunpowder Gin (43% Vol) is packed with 12 botanicals; Meadowsweet, Juniper Berries, Cardamom, Coriander Seed, Angelica root, Orris Root, Caraway Seed, Star Anise, Gunpowder Tea, Chinese Lemon, Oriental Grapefruit and Kaffir Lime.
A beautiful drink with a lot of botanicals working well together, pair with tonic and a wedge of pink grapefruit.
Another one named after its location of origin. For a cool, mellow drink with hints of spices, this is the gin for you.
Glendalough Wild Botanical (42% Vol) is created using handpicked fresh botanicals from the nearby mountains and forests of Glendalough glacial valley.
To bring out the flavours serve with a high-quality tonic and a sprig of mint.
Finally, in the book ‘Around the World in 80 Day’s’ they finally landed in Liverpool. Which is good news for us, as Liverpool has a brilliant selection of gins on offer.
Obviously the one that will come to mind is Liverpool Gin, and it is on the list as its one of my favourite distilleries.
But first, let’s see what other gin’s Liverpool has to offer:
Ginsmiths is a distillery that is just off the Liverpool Docks and if you’re ever in Liverpool I recommend a visit as you will be able to order all 3 of their gins. The have a Merchant Navy Gin, a Dry Gin and the Marshmallow Gin (40% Vol).
This is a unique delicate gin which is based on their Dry Gin, by using marshmallow root as one of its botanicals it has a lovely sweet flavour of marshmallow.
Recommended to be served with Thomas Henry Tonic and berries.
This small batch, handmade gin, is a mix of bittersweet and floral botanicals. Wirral (42% Vol) contains a new botanical that hasn’t been used in the rest of the gins on this list; Bog Myrtle.
Apparently, Wirral literally means ‘Myrtle Corner’ due to the amount of myrtle plant there was growing there when it was first named in the 8th century.
Back to the gin, it contains an abundance of botanicals, but with the exception of Bug Myrtle and Juniper, the rest are kept secret.
It is a clean drink with a very subtle taste of spice, citrus, sweet and floral combined.
Serve on the rocks, with a bowl of scouse.
Here is my offering from Liverpool gin Distillery, their Valencia Orange Gin (42% Vol) is a flavoursome drink that you won’t regret purchasing.
Jam packed full of zesty, citrus orange designed by head distiller John O’Dowd to celebrate his son’s wedding to Valencian born Clara.
It’s a simply wonderful gin that is light and refreshing and memorable. Serve with Fevertree Mediterranean tonic and a big slice of the juiciest orange you can find.
Phileas Fogg returns to London, England
As the inspiration for this blog post was Phileas Fogg’s wager that he could travel around the world in 80 days. It would have been a massive celebration for him when he managed to return to the London Reform Club just in time to win the bet of £20,000 (£2,075,400 in 2018).
As we covered the best London Gins at the starting point in this post, I feel we should just focus on a drink that is worth to be saved for celebrations.
This year the ‘World’s Best 2018 Gin’ winner was Herno Gin.
This is the most awarded gin in Europe and has won World’s Best Gin in 2017 and 2018. So if you have a celebration planned, I suggest this is the drink to toast with.
What makes Herno stand out from the rest? They believe it’s the last three botanicals added that makes the difference, Vanilla, Meadowsweet and Nordic Lingonberries.
A beautiful smooth tipple that is loved by all who try it.
And that is thankfully the end of this massive post about ‘Around the World in 80 Gins’. I honestly never thought I would finish it, so I’m off to celebrate with a gin!