The very first alcoholic drink I’ve ever had was a Tanqueray and tonic. It went down smooth, with the flavor of quinine hitting the top of my tongue as the burn of the gin went down the back of my throat. Gin is not made for everyone however, mostly due to the strength of the flavor itself. Most of the spirits that we drink, such as vodka or whiskey, are made from corn, wheat, rye, potatoes, etc. Now the alcohol in the gin comes from fermented grain (a common ingredient for vodka) however what makes gin so special is the process of adding different spices and herbs into the fermented grain to give it a particular taste. No gin truly tastes the same which is what makes gin such a fantastic spirit. Different distillers use different combinations of herbs and spices to make a truly unique batch of a wonderful elixir that will get your drunk after three glasses.
I’ll be honest, not many of my friends enjoy the wonders of a good gin. Most of their memories of gin include getting their friends who were 21 to buy a cheap handle of the cheapest gin which eventually led to a night of puke and teenage debauchery. However, we are all adults now so lets be classy and get drunk off of the following gins which will eventually lead to a night of puke and adult debauchery. The following gins are some of my favorites and how and when they should be drank, however if you want a Bombay Sapphire and pineapple juice then shoot get you a Bombay Sapphire and pineapple juice. Just have a good time and drink more gin.
- Hendricks Gin
By far, my favorite gin out of all the gin I’ve had due to its simply refreshing taste. What makes Hendricks special is their particular use of cucumber and and bulgarian rose. Hendricks sits at about 44% ABV which means after three of these bad boys you’ll be throwing your best moves at that cute bartender who will look like she’s very interested only because she wants you to tip her all the money in your bank account.
How to Drink It: Over ice with some nice tonic water with a cucumber instead of the normal lime
When to Drink It: When you are in a fancy jazz club. When you are trying to impress a girl or guy getting a degree in English or History. When you see the bottle and think “that’s a cool looking bottle, let me try that”.
2. Roxor Artisan Gin
This is one of the few gins you can drink on the rocks due to its humble taste (and the fact that it does not taste like nail polish remover which is always a plus). Locally made in Texas by a man who drives the newest Tesla, Roxor tastes smooth, goes down smooth, and doesn’t kill you like most gins. This gin takes you to dinner, buys you a nice meal with a couple bottles of mid expensive wines, takes you dancing at the swanky Latin club across the street, charms you with moves taken from Dirty Dancing, invites you up to their apartment, and makes sweet love to you. The best part? Roxor Gin ends up calling you back the next day thanking you for such a wonderful night last night. Try it sometime.
How To Drink It: A negroni, a gimlet, or a gin and tonic. Whatever it takes to get this gin into your body. You won’t regret it like how I regret texting girls I’ve been interested in at 3 o’clock in the morning, drunk, telling them how pretty they are and how I want to smell their hair.
Where To Drink It: When you are trying to be classy but you know you’re a ratchet person in the inside. When the world seems to be crashing down all around you, your friends have abandoned you, and you are trying to find salvation at the bottom of your glass. When you’re at your friend’s birthday party.
3. New Amsterdam Gin
Locally, it’s $14.99 for a 1.75 L of Seagram’s Gin. It’s cheap. It’s tasty and when mixed with a fruity mixer – dangerous. The gin I used to drink when I was a poor college student, this gin brings back a lot of memories, good and mostly bad. This gin really tastes like an orange flavored vodka but it got me to where I needed to be and I liked being different in comparison to the douche who brought a 24 pack of Keystone Light to the party.
How To Drink It: Here’s my go to recipe for when I went to parties with people just turning 21: A double shot of New Amsterdam Gin poured into a shaker that you brought because you’re a bona-fide bartender, ice, any kind of fruity mixer (pineapple, cranberry, apple juice, whatever – just open that can with some flair), shake it a couple of times and pour into the red solo cups placed in front of you by drunk college kids mesmerized by how cool you are, and top it off with a splash of sprite. Give it a fancy name, I called mine “The Balanced Horn” and bam you are the coolest person at the party (at least you think you are but the alcohol keeps assuring you that you are)
Where To Drink It: Kick Backs. Ragers. Darties (Day Parties). Pool Parties. Your 11 AM Biology Class. Your 1 PM History Class. Your 3 PM English Class. When You’re visiting you parents. When you are strapped on cash but still trying to party. When you are in college. When you are in High School. When you are a child.
These are my top three gins that I have enjoyed in my lifetime. I urge all of you to try a gin based drink the next time you go out. It is as simple as ordering a Gin and Tonic and then you are in. If we ever go out for drinks, I’ll buy one for you myself! That is a Leonardo guarantee. Embrace the Juniper and it will reward you.