Spirit

No. 3 London Dry Gin

No 3 London Dry Gin 750ml HR

Packing wise, this gin is a winner from the start. Packaged in a fine white box, beautifully printed, I’ve got a feeling of anticipation usually reserved for the premium end of the whisky and cognac spectrum. The bottle slides out, hand wrapped in a custom printed tissue map of the home of Berry Bros. & Rudd wine merchants. The bottle itself is adorned with the key to the premises at No. 3 St. James Street and closed with a great piece of lead foiling stamped the the merchants Royal Warrant.

Uncorking the bottle you get a massive hit of juniper. The theme of threes is more than just packaging. Three fruits; juniper, grapefruit and orange lie down perfectly with three spices; angelica, coriander and cardamom. Designed as the last word in Gin for a Dry Martini by a man with a doctorate in distillation, the liquid certainly doesn’t disappoint.

46% abv makes it a pleasure in a G&T, particularly when you pair things up with a quality Quina Fina tonic and a decent squeeze of lemon. The juniper is a standout in a super Dry Martini, and I liked a 5:1 ratio with Dolin that I’ve just sucked down too.

This is the perfect gin to supercharge your Gin classics for the holidays. The spirit of cricket might have taken a beating these last few days in Australia but you shouldn’t think that everything English has gone past date. London Dry Gin defines a style as old as modern drinking for a reason, as a category it is great and this is its epitome.

Brandwise, this is a beautifully conceived and executed example. The story is inextricably welded to an authentic history. The paper hand wrapping of each bottle, like the proprietors have been turning out of St. James St more than 300 years. The spirit is distilled in the copper pots in Schiedam, Holland, where the original gin the British stole improved upon came from.

$80 a bottle from Nicks. Not the cheapest of juniper liquids in this country but a delightful change up to the citrus driven English and more floral craft gins on the market.

An excellent gift or treat to any lover of Mother’s Ruin.

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Spirit

Facundo Profundo

facundobacardiThe sugar spirit supremos amongst you will have already caught this news, but a few in the lucky country may have missed that Bacardi chose to memorialise the transition of two of their ambassadorial sons, Jeremy Shipley and Martin Newell, with a spectacularly distilled and designed set of rums.

The fame and following of these two special individuals notwithstanding, the line was commissioned for the Cataln progeny of bricklayers, one Don Facundo Bacardi Mass├│. Escaping from Stiges to Cuba, Facundo established and grew the Bacardi brand from obscurity to lay the foundations of one of the most recognisable alcoholic products on earth. It’s a nice piece of symmetry too, that the current controller of the company also bears the name Facundo Bacardi.

What they’ve bought to market are a suite of four rums, set to elevate the category and help brand loyalists ladder up into the lofty heights now on offer.

Details are a touch thin, as they’re not on offer yet in Australia and I won’t speak to taste until I’ve had lips on the product myself, prices are RRP in US dollars, expect to pay more if they come to Australia.

Here’s what I’ve been able to glean. Neo ($45) is an up-to-eight year old white rum, more oak and complexity than the Bacardi you’re used to. Next is Eximo ($60) an American Oak finished rum with an up to 10 years age claim. Exquisito ($90 steps things up again with 7-23 year old rums blended and finished in sherry casks. At the top of the mountain is Paraiso ($250) 23 yr old rums from the family reserve, blended and finished in ex-Cognac barrels.

They do sound delicious. I hope we get some downunder soon.

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