Happy World Gin Day

Today is World Gin Day and judging from the notifications I’ve received from friends tagging me in World Gin Day-related posts on social media, my personal brand game is strong (and not at all concerning, thankyouverymuch).

I was introduced to the simple perfection of the G&T when I lived in England and I’ve remained loyal ever since. I love the different layers of bitter flavours in the gin and tonic, and how they play off the sour citrus flavour of the lime. Others may resort to soda to cut back on sugar (not mentioning any names, *cough* Shawn *cough*) but I refuse to deviate from my One True G&T (extra lime, fancy tonic, lots of ice but make it big so it melts slower we’re not animals).

My favourite gin changes from time to time. I love trying new blends from different distilleries, and contrary to what my social media presence may indicate, I don’t actually drink all that often, so I haven’t really had the opportunity to remain loyal to one gin. My current favourite is the Empress Gin from Victoria Distillers (a gorgeous indigo-coloured gin that changes colour when you add tonic and, uhh, also tastes great if you need your gin to do more than just perform visually).

The trick to making a great gin & tonic, in my humble opinion, is using giant ice cubes. Giant ice cubes look cool, yes, but they’re functional too. They melt slower which means your drink stays cold longer without becoming diluted. It’s science.  This is the ice cube tray I use.

Once you’ve figured out your gin and ice situation, you just need to decide what your mixer and add-ins will be. My favourite tonic water is Fever-Tree Aromatic Tonic but if you’re looking for a non-pink option that tastes more interesting than your standard tonic, their Elderflower Tonic is also great.  For my G&T accoutrement, I’m loyal to lime but I’ve been known to venture into the world of grapefruit (give me all the bitter). I’ve tried both cucumber and lemon but neither did it for me. Once I had a fancy restaurant G&T that had lavender in it and I spent the entire meal picking dried lavender buds out of my teeth. It was not a great G&T experience.

What’s your drink of choice? Are you a gin enthusiast? What’s your perfect G&T?

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The Gin Meow-er ... A Gin-Based, Cat-Themed Cocktail

My girl, Caitlin, had surgery this week and her hilarious husband took over her Twitter account to keep everyone updated. Hilarity ensued and resulted in me stating I would make a gin-based / cat-themed cocktail in Caitlin's honour. Because #love.

And so, I give you the Gin Meow-er. Like a Gin Sour but cattier.

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Ingredients

3 ounces gin (I used The London No1 because I find it quite citrusy and thought it would play well with the lemon and lime.)

Juice of 1 lime

Juice of 1 lemon

1 egg white (or 2 Tablespoons pasteurized egg white. You find this in a carton in the egg cooler at the grocery store. This is what I used because my mom read an article on raw eggs and salmonella in, like, 1989 and our family hasn't been the same since. Love you, Mom!)

1 ounce simple syrup (I made a rosemary lemon simple syrup because I am fancy like that. Recipe below.)

Directions

Fill cocktail shaker 2/3 with ice. Add all ingredients and shake vigourously for about 20 seconds or until you've got a nice froth. Strain into two glasses over ice. Garnish with rosemary springs and lemon wheels. Enjoy!

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Rosemary Lemon Simple Syrup

Put 1 cup sugar, 1 cup water, zest from half a lemon, and 3 - 4 sprigs fresh rosemary in a pan. Heat over medium-high heat until mixture comes to a boil and sugar is dissolved. Turn heat off and let mixture steep for 30 minutes. Strain and store in the fridge. This syrup is great in cocktails but you can also use it to make an excellent alcohol-free beverage with the addition of lemonade and soda water.

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Top Three Gins

In honour of World Gin Day, I wanted to write a post celebrating my favourite libation. I've tried a few different gins in my time and three stand out as my tried and true. So! Here they are, in no particular order (because I can't pick a favourite):

Okanagan Spirits Gin

I am new to Okanagan Spirits. I was lucky enough to tour their facilities (both in Vernon and Kelowna!) and enjoy a Prohibition Party as part of ROAM. We kicked off the evening with a round of French 75s (aka one of my favourite cocktails) and I was hooked. I find this gin to be on the lighter side of the gin spectrum so if you aren't a fan of gin that punches you in the face with its gin-ness, this would be a good one for you to try. Plus it's made with a fruit-based alcohol (with 100% BC fruit!) so it's gluten-free.

Victoria Gin

I was introduced to this gin a year ago and it quickly became my go-to gin. It's intensely flavoured but so smooth. It's not lost in a cocktail the way a milder gin might be. Even in a Bramble I can still taste the distinctive Victoria Gin botanicals. Also gluten-free. (Seriously, I am SO GLAD that I have gluten-free options just in case my body decides to rebel against gluten. I was tested for celiac disease earlier this year and I was all "but what about the gin?" All my worrying was for naught!)

St. George Spirits Botanivore Gin

My oldest friend brought me a taster pack of St. George Gin (three bottles of gin in one box! Heavenly.) and the Botanivore was my favourite by far. It's complex (19 different botanicals!) but still manages to be light and refreshing. This is my favourite G&T gin. Lots of ice, a little lime, and I'm a happy gal. I've been told that lemon is better to pair with gin because it enhances the botanicals better than lime but I'm a diehard lime fan. What do you use to garnish your G&T?

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