Own branded Gin has improved big time since the nineties. Long gone are the days where cheap Gins were made from cheap molasses and tasted of treacle, rather than the clean cereal flavours of the ones that were produced from the more expensive grains. Then the priority was simply hitting the required price point rather than competing with the quality brands like Beefeater, Bombay Sapphire and Plymouth.
Another big negative that happened and is still here today, and again to hit the required points, the popular brands, like Gordon’s and the Supermarket’s own branded gins reduced their alcohol content from 40% to 37.5%, thereby saving a few pence in duty, but losing much more in image and taste. As any Gin drinker knows, alcohol helps to retain flavour and reducing it means less of that characteristic botanical perfume. The best will work well for the G&T drinker, but not for the ‘nearly neat’ drinker!
The good news for G&T aficionado and the ‘nearly neat’ drinker is that there is now a growing number of 40% plus Gins on the supermarket shelves, both branded and own branded. These are the ones to search out for, especially if you are making Gin Martinis, Pink Gins or just great tasting G&T. Choose wisely. Buy well.
Waitrose Original London Dry Gin, 40%
40% alcohol rather the normal 37.5%. The botanicals are not as pronounced as Waitrose’s 37.5% Gin and it presents a smooth rounded taste that’s more akin to Plymouth and Tanqueray No.10. Smooth enough to be drunk neat. If the style, and price fits – put a bottle in the trolley.
Competing Brands: Tanqueray No.10,Gordon’s, Bombay Sapphire, Beefeater & Plymouth