I have had the best time writing these spirited notes the last few months. Sharing some of my favorite spirits and jokes with you has been a treat. This latest “Raising Spirits” is no exception. I know I’ve been talking a lot about whiskeys, but today I’m feeling some gin. Another beauty from McClintock – mind you I would love to feature everything they make. These guys are unafraid of taking risks with their spirits, and this is one that pays off in a big way.
McClintock’s Gardener’s Gin is, quite simply, outstanding. It’s been kind of hot lately, so what are you going to do? Have a refreshing beverage! And, what’s more refreshing than something made with gin? Perhaps a rosé. Well, brace yourselves! This gin brings together the best of both worlds! You know you wanna learn more about this beautiful spirit…
Why do melons have weddings? Because they cantaloupe!
On this, my final occasion to write a Raising Spirits segment, I wanted to take a little divergence.
Here’s a fun little thing for you to know about me: As much as I love whiskey, I also love gin. Especially in the summer. I also love rosés, so you can imagine my delight when, last year, McClintock released their first batch of Gardener’s Gin. The gin features a botanical mix of lavender, cucumber, and mint, finished with citrus peels. But. But! What makes this a knockout is the fact that it’s finished in Madeira wine casks, giving it a beautiful and gentle pink glow, and imparting classic Madeira qualities.
What makes gin special? Well, the primary botanical used is the juniper berry which comes from cedar (hence the pine quality that so many folks claim to not enjoy). Other aromatics are then added, usually including some kind of citrus peel, cinnamon, anise, and cardamom. You can see, then, why gin is a complex spirit. McClintock takes this one step further and adds aromatics during the distillation phase, which means the aromatics are added through vapor, allowing the aromatics to come across as almost delicate within the spirit.
Perhaps to understand why this particular gin is such a treat, I should take a moment to tell you about Madeira. Madeira is a traditional Portuguese fortified wine. This stems from the 1600s, when wine would often spoil during sea voyages, and so a little brandy would be added to fortify the wines in an effort to keep them from spoiling. As it turns out, the fortification coupled with the varying temperatures in the ships’ storage spaces deepened the quality of the wine and came to be known as “Vinho da Roda” or “Wine that Made a Round Trip.”
The profile of Madeira nicely matches that of the Gardener’s Gin. Madeira is known for having hints of lemon and other citrus, a bit of nuttiness (think walnut), and sometimes cucumber. This profile is brought out in a big way with the Gardener’s when you consider that cucumber and citrus peel are prominently featured.
And that, my friends, is that. It’s rosé season! So, why not enjoy the best of both the spirit and wine worlds, and treat yourself to a little Gardener’s Gin!
This is Georgann, signing off. I hope you’ve enjoyed my spirited corner as much as I’ve enjoyed sharing my thoughts with you.
I tell dad jokes, but I have no kids. I guess that makes me a faux pa!