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Genever Or Gin? A Spirit-ed Guide To Telling Them Apart

Genever Vs Gin: Unravelling the Differences Between The Best Bases

Gin has been revived, now it's time for a genever renaissance! Genever has received a lot of popularity among mixologists and drinkers who like to use it as a base spirit in cocktails. With Genever being the gin's predecessor, especially the London Dry Gin, it becomes important to be able to distinguish the two spirits and also know their similarities. 

Common Ingredients

Both spirits contain juniper and spices such as coriander or anise, citrus peels, and bittering agents such as orris root or angelica.

Differences

Origin

Genever originated in Northern Europe, most likely in The Netherlands, but Belgium too has claimed to be the country of its invention. Gin is known to have been officially invented in England. 

Manufacturing

Gin can be made anywhere in the world. However, genever can only be produced in The Netherlands, Belgium and parts of Germany and France. There are laws which limit the manufacturing of the spirit to these regions.

Key Ingredient

Juniper berry is a key ingredient to make gins. In fact, the London Dry Gin can be only qualified to be called one if it has a certain amount of juniper berries. Genever is qualified by a particular ingredient, It is the process of its manufacturing that defines it.

Genever Vs Gin: Unravelling the Differences Between The Best Bases

Raw Material

Genever is made from grains like rye, malted barley and corn. Hence, experts also called the spirit a cross between gin and whisky. Gin can be made using any raw material.

Flavour

Gin is considered to have a classic, crisp flavour profile with juniper being the hero among its components. Genever has a malty taste and subtle notes of botanicals and spices. It can also have a neutral flavour like vodka.

Use In Cocktails

Genever

Genever, which existed before gin, was traditionally used to make cocktails. Most classic cocktails will turn out well if genever is used as their base. Genever goes well with amaro, bitters, and vermouth as it has a complex flavour profile and a higher percent of malt spirit. Young genever, which has a neutral flavour, is great for making fruity drinks. The cocktail gets an underlying hint of malt which doesn't overpower the flavour of the cocktail. Aged genever goes well with other aged spirits. You can substitute aged rum or whiskies with aged genever to get a delicious cocktail.

Genever Vs Gin: Unravelling the Differences Between The Best Bases

Gin

Gin has a crisp and refreshing flavour which makes it great for summer cocktails. Its versatility makes it easy to make any kind of drink. The juniper-forward spirit which also has a complex combination of spices, herbs etc gives cocktails an added depth.

While it's great to learn about alcohol, it is important to also consume alcohol moderately. Remember to serve and drink responsibly to ensure you and your guests are healthy and out of harm's way. If you know anyone who has trouble controlling their alcohol intake, please refer them to a professional immediately.

 

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