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THE ART OF GIN TASTING

by Rohan Mathew
THE ART OF GIN TASTING

Gin is an alcoholic drink derived from Juniper Berries. Gin was intended to be used as medicinal liquor and was made by monks and alchemists who lived in Europe [Southern France, Flanders, and the Netherlands] to provide the ethanol from distillates grapes and grains. The emergence of gin in England occurred when jenever, a Dutch and Belgian liquor, was introduced in the British Capital.

After juniper, gin is flavoured with herbal, spice, fruit-flavours, or floral flavours. It is most commonly mixed with tonic water and served as a drink. Gin tasting is an experience of tasting new gin and allowing the flavour to tingle your sensations. The best way to savour the taste of a bottle of gin is discussed below.

Leave out any additional drinks

While gin is traditionally mixed with some tonic water, it is not recommended to do so if you are tasting the gin as it interferes with its flavour.

Using a curved glass

A curved glass helps the flavour be retained in the liquid and allows the aroma to spread around. A swirl will open up the liquid and release the aroma within and thus help you taste the strong flavour of your favourite drink.

Testing the Flavour of Coffee

It is a standard practice to sniff coffee before you taste anything to use your nose like a critic. Coffee clears your palate and takes out any residual smells so that your nose and, to some extent, your mouth are only tasting the flavourful drink.

Smelling the drink

Gently swirl the glass and smell the drink. Don’t take a long breath as the alcohol could burn the insides of your nose but instead align your nose with the rim and take a gentle sniff. The aromas will make their way into your nasal pathways and bring joy to your senses. The primary scents are citrus, orange, floral, and earthy.

Wet your hands with the gin

Place a few drops of gin into your hand and allow it to run the length of your palm. After the gin has completely covered your palm in a very thin layer of liquid, cup your hands and smell it. This helps the flavour of the gin get stronger.

Tasting

  1. Take a small sip and try to identify the flavours you caught when you were smelling the gin. If you were able to identify most of the flavours, that means you did your smelling right.
  2. Let the alcohol rest on your tongue and then swirl it around in your mouth so that it reaches all corners of the mouth, releasing the aroma and letting the flavour burst through the ethanol.
  3. Now swallow the gin and try to remember which taste lingers. The aftertaste of gin is significant because it allows your senses to recognize the taste of the drink you had and gives you immense satisfaction,

A gin is a drink for special occasions and often a drink to celebrate cherished memories. Gin tasting should be done when you have time at hand and it shouldn’t be hurried, as the meaning is lost if a time restriction is imposed against such a magnificent activity.

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