Review: Greylock Gin

18 July 2009 – 10:56 am

Gin may have been invented in Holland (well, jenever or genever at least), but England created the sensation across its empire. So, it’s only natural that botique gins have emerged in Massachusetts, USA. It may be the home of the American Revolution and the “cradle of liberty”, but the names of towns and cities bear the mark of the British Empire: Boston, Harwich, Gloucester, Hingham, Cheshire, Acton, Cambridge, Chatham, Chesterfield, Waltham and so on. Massachusetts is also one of the few places in the United States where sales of imported gins exceed those of domestic gins.

With this sophisticated palate and deep British foundations, it’s no surprise that Greylock Gin balances tradition with rebellion. Coming from the heart of the Berkshire Mountains, the stylish bottle belies the rural upbringing of this gin. A glance at the bottle evokes a martini at the Ritz, but a look at the map for Berkshire Mountain Distillers and you think of a mug of moonshine on the farm.

The taste brings the same dichotomy. Yes, there’s juniper.  But Greylock Gin’s fresh flavor is brighter than traditional london dry gin, with cinnamon, orange peel and angelica root smoothing things out. Yet, this gin is not as vague as New Amsterdam which seems to get lost in the wilderness of new ideas.

Greylock Gin is perfectly pleasant on the rocks, or you can excite your usual martini with a splash of orange bitters. The best cocktails build on Greylock’s friendlier botanicals, such as

  • Mississippi Mule (2 ounces Greylock Gin, splash of Creme de Cassis, splash of Lemon Juice)
  • Lavender Martini (2 ounces Greylock Gin, 1/2 ounce Dry Vermouth, 1/2 ounce Lavender Simple Syrup, splash of Orange Bitters)
  • Aviation (2 ounces Greylock Gin, 1/2 ounce Maraschino, 1/4 ounce Lemon Juice)

Ponder the 1776 rebellion. Consider your own. Or just be satisfied. Greylock Gin reminds us of the benefits of both the old and the new.

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