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There’s no hiding the fact that gin is trendy. My recommendations for someone who hasn’t tried the good stuff yet is to swap the traditional Gordons gin and tonic for a higher quality gin and Fanta Lemon, or try a flavoured liquor instead. Often, people realise their issue isn’t with gin, it’s with tonic or that their first gin was simply rough as houses.
I first tried gin a little over a year ago, starting with the rough Gordon’s Import I bought for cheap in-flight. This was ok, I enjoyed it, but like I said, it was rough. It was time to start experimenting to see if there were gins out there that were better.
5. Violet Gin
One of the next gin’s I remember trying is the Zymurgorium Violet Gin. It tasted fantastic mixed with lemonade, but something in the ingredients meant I was left with a shocking headache 5 minutes after my first sip.
Reluctantly, I tried a second Violet as I was worried I’d get a headache again and actually this was better than the first. I mixed the JJ Whitley Violet Gin with some lemonade and had a relaxing evening. Fantastic. JJ Whitley is also a lot cheaper than the Zymurgorium, and more widely available.
4. Spanish Gin
Above, I recommended a gin mixed with Fanta Lemon. Now, I don’t know which specific gin I had mixed in with Fanta Lemon because I tried it when abroad and enjoying the all-inclusive lifestyle, but it also tasted great with house tonic. I’ve previously attended a Gin Festival, where a brand styled their gin based on Spanish flavours. I instantly knew what all the fuss was about once I tried it for myself. There’s something about Spanish gin that’s fruitier, and smoother than a traditional London Dry.
3. Champagne and Gin Liquor Cocktails
I’m not someone who would go out and buy a bottle of champagne for myself, but I’ve been lucky enough that my boss has bought me three bottles since I started. The collection was getting ridiculous and it needed to get used.
My mum and I decided we would try mixing the cheapest bottle (not that champagne is cheap!) with some Passionfruit Gin Liquor and it was delicious. I’d recommend this for a summer BBQ rather than a winter evening, but seeing as I tried it a couple of days before Christmas, I’m not one to tell you when to drink.
2. Colour Changing Gin
I’m adding this purely for the magic and entertainment factor. This Forest Fruits flavoured gin has a PH reactive ingredient to turn from blue to purple when mixed with tonic.
As well as being an entertaining drink, it’s tasty too.
1. Old Tom Gin
Rather than the traditional London Dry, an Old Tom can be hard to find. But, I recommend tracking one down. I recommend Gin Lane 1751 which you can occasionally find in Aldi or Lidl.
Old Tom’s are made to be sweeter, which can be a big selling point for a Gin drinker.
A special mention goes to pink gin. A fruitier, delicious gin that everyone seems to enjoy once they try a sip. Be careful though, when mixed with the right stuff pink gin tastes just like juice and suddenly you’re on the floor!
As well as trying these gin styles in your own home, I recommend taking a trip to a drinks event such as Gin Live [COLLAB], which allows you unlimited samples of a wide variety of gin which you may not be able to find anywhere else. As well as sampling rarer gins, there’s brands attending such as Edinburgh Gin which you may recognise from the supermarket. This means you can try a named brand without the commitment to a bottle – a win in my books!