Why Gin Connoisseurs Swear By London Dry (& All You Need To Know About The Spirit)
For gin aficionados and cocktail connoisseurs, London Dry Gin is the undisputed crown jewel in the world of spirits. If you’re wondering what the fuss (or hype, depending on how you look at it) is about, and why this spirit is not only a cultural icon but also a symbol of intricacy, here’s an explanation: The London Dry gin found its name in the traditional pubs from the alleys of London, that were frequented by artists, musicians, actors, philosophers and writers in search of a muse or inspiration.
Origins & Journey
London Dry gin achieved its popularity in the 18th century during the period known as the ‘Gin Craze’, and what set it apart was its one-of-a-kind taste. The base ethanol was drowned in juniper berries, with coriander seeds, angelica root, citrus peel and orris root providing back-up for a truly flavoursome spirit. Additionally, the distilled liquor used less water in its production — which meant flavours were concentrated and pronounced.
A key technological advancement that spurred the production of London Dry Gin was the invention, in 1831, of a new type of still by an Irishman named Aeneas Coffey. Coffey’s still, also known as the column or continuous still, ensured a very high degree of purity could be attained in distillation. There was a higher concentration of alcohol in the final distillate, as Difford’s Guide explains; there was no longer any need to ‘soften’ hitherto harsh spirits with copious amounts of sugar. Further, stopping and starting for every new batch of spirit that had to be distilled — unlike the pot still — wasn’t necessary either, leading to a more economical method.
In The Present
Compared to its counterparts, London Dry gin is also a ‘cleaner’ drink on the grounds that artificial flavouring and sweeteners are absolutely prohibited. Its taste is purely the result of the natural ingredients infused during its distillation.
London Dry Gin is immensely popular in India on account of our love for flavours and spices, and you can’t go wrong with brands like Tanqueray or Gordon’s, that have a long-standing heritage of producing this type of gin. You can enjoy the spirit — responsibly! — in the following ways:
Tanqueray Gin & Tonic
This smooth, straightforward Tanqueray gin meshes perfectly with bittersweet tonic water.
Tanqueray London Dry Gin, 60 ml
Tonic water, 180 ml
Lime wedge, for the garnish
Pour Tanqueray London Dry gin in a big copa glass with a big block of ice.
Add tonic water and drop a lime wedge inside.
Tanqueray London Dry Gin, 50 ml
Fresh orange juice, 150 ml
Grenadine syrup, 10 ml
Orange slice, for the garnish
Pour Tanqueray London Dry Gin in a highball glass with lots of ice.
Pour orange juice on top of the gin and add grenadine on top of the drink.
Garnish with an orange slice.
Negroni — Tanqueray No. 10
This globally popular drink stimulates your appetite before a meal.
Tanqueray No. 10, 30 ml
Martini Rosso, 30 ml
Orange liqueur, 30 ml
Orange peel, for the garnish
Combine all the ingredients in a mixing jar.
Stir well with ice, strain and pour into an old-fashioned glass.
Garnish with the orange peel.