It’s early 2024, meaning 2023 is firmly in our rearview mirror. The time is right to look forward to all the high-quality, flavorful spirits we will imbibe this year. In the coming weeks, we’re going to take a deep dive into whiskey, tequila, mezcal, gin, and beyond. Today, however, belongs to gin alone. We enjoyed a lot of this juniper-based spirit in 2023, but 2024 is sure to be even more gin-soaked.
Gin is a very interesting spirit, to say the least. It’s very complex, versatile, and unique to its maker. This distilled clear spirit is well-known for its bold, piney juniper flavor. But, while that aromatic and flavorful berry takes center stage, the rest of the gin’s ingredients are up to the distillers. They can incorporate various herbs and botanicals including anise, Angelica root, licorice, orris root, orange peel, and various other complementary ingredients.
2024 is a year for classic London Dry gins, artisanal expressions, and new, interesting flavor combinations to shine. Below, you’ll find eight of our favorite gins, ranked based on overall mixability, aroma, and flavor. Keep scrolling to see them all.
The Botanist Islay Dry Gin
First released in 2010, The Botanist Islay Dry Gin is still one of the best, most versatile gins on the market and one we’ll use often in 2024. Instead of using a handful of popular ingredients, this flavorful gin is made with 22 hand-foraged herbs and botanicals (including berries, seeds, citrus peels, and more) from the island of Islay, where the spirit is produced. Made by renowned Scotch whisky maker Bruichladdich, it’s known for its aromas of sea salt, pepper, pine needles, and mint leaves and palate of juniper, licorice, chamomile tea, and wintry spices.
Cotswolds Dry Gin
Cotswolds Dry Gin proves that great dry gin can come from places in England besides London. This award-winning dry gin is flavored with nine specifically selected herbs and botanicals, including juniper berries, lime zest, pink grapefruit, and locally sourced lavender. It’s known for its unique, cloudy appearance when ice is added to your glass. On the nose, you’ll find scents of wildflowers, lavenders, citrus zest, and herbal mint. Drinking it reveals notes of lavender, citrus peels, grapefruit, pine, and cracked black pepper.
Gin Mare Capri
Made to pay tribute to the island of Capri, this Spanish gin is flavored with a handful of local, unique ingredients. They include Capri lemons as well as bergamot, Arbequina olives, rosemary, thyme, and basil. The nose begins with olives, rosemary, thyme, and juniper. The palate is a symphony of Spain with flavors like bergamot, olive oil, lemon, and pine. It’s a truly interesting gin that needs to be tasted to be believed.
Citadelle Jardin d’Été
In the last few years, France’s Citadelle Gin has become a big name in the gin world. While classic Citadelle Gin is an outstanding choice for 2024, we prefer the newer Citadelle Jardin d’Été. Inspired by a nature preserve called Château de Bonbonnet, this gin gets its flavor from the use of yuzu, orange zest, Charentais melon, whole lemons, and more. It’s well-known for its complex flavor profile featuring notes of juniper berries, citrus, and spices.
Gray Whale Gin
If you’ve never tried Gray Whale Gin, 2024 is the time to do it. It’s named Gray Whale Gin because its herbs and botanicals are found along the migratory path up the California coast by the Gray Whale. There’s juniper from Big Sur, limes from Temecula Valley, fir trees from Sonoma, and even sea kelp from the Mendocino coast. It’s well-known for its nose of mint, fir tips, and citrus and a palate of mint leaves, juniper berries, citrus, and spices. It’s a great choice for a gin & tonic or any of your go-to gin cocktails.
Four Pillars Rare Dry Gin
This award-winning Australian gin is the brand’s original flagship expression. It just might be one of the most complex gins in the world. It starts with a base of Asian botanicals and moves on to citrus from the Mediterranean. Its herbs and botanicals include flavors from around the globe. This includes juniper berries from Macedonia, oranges from Australia, Lemon Myrtle from Queensland, Australia, coriander from South Australia, cardamon from Guatemala, and even cassia from Sri Lanka.
While juniper is the main event when it comes to gin, the other flavors vary depending on the brand. The key is finding the type of gin you enjoy. If you prefer one with a more floral hint, look for gins described that way. Is citrus more your jam? Look for those heavily featuring grapefruit, orange, or lemon peels.
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