There is a gin that I have noticed is becoming increasingly prevalent in a number of bars in London and its appearance is matched by an enthusiasm of bartenders for this product; the spirit in question is Three Corners Dry Gin by A.v.WEES.
A.v.Wees are a Dutch company that are well-known for their traditional-style Genevers, but this new product “respects the English influence” on gin. That said, Van Wees were not content to produce another carbon-copy of other London Dry Gins; instead, they opted for a little differentiation and, as a result, only use two botanicals: juniper berries (naturally) and lemon.
As a fan of gin in a market where producers seem to be constantly out-doing each other with how many botanicals they can put in – I think the record is now close to 40 – two botanicals is rather a breath of fresh air.
The nose is of juniper & citrus (surprise! surprise!). The taste contains powerful juniper and citrus notes, floral touches and a hint of coriander (even though I know it contains none). I thought that it was dry and a rather classic example of the London Dry Gin style.
Gin & Tonic
A strong flavour, with a pleasant mix of juniper and citrus, which holds up well to the tonic. A making a memorable and cooling drink.
Another strongly flavoured drink that is also clean and crisp. The simplicity of flavours works well in what is a very simple cocktail. That said, the drink is surprisingly complex and has good depth of flavour.
A bitter and herbally complex Negroni. Very flavourful, with slightly more of a bitter edge than your average Negroni.
Sharp and citrusy, with some juniper and some very subtle floral hints from the maraschino and Creme de Violette. Very smooth and quite tart.
James Bond Gin & Tonic
Following the popularity of the Carte Blanche cocktail in the recent Angostura Bitters article, I thought I’d take a look at another 007 cocktail: the James Bond Gin & Tonic.
This is enjoyed by Bond in the book Dr. No after a long trans-Atlantic flight to Jamaica.
Take a large hi-ball glass and add a double measure of gin.
Cut a lime in half and drop the two squeezed halves into the glass.
Fill the glass with ice.
Top-up with tonic water.
With Three Corners, this had a nice, fresh tartness, making a refreshing and invigorating drink. The simple, no-nonsense character of the gin comes through, with the citrus of the gin also working well with the lime; perhaps surprisingly, the sheer volume of lime juice called for by the recipe is not overpowered.
This is a Gin & Tonic full of juniper and citrus and is rather lovely.
I found experimenting with the Three Corners very interesting and, for me, it works best in simple cocktails, where it can be fully appreciated. For a gin with only two botanicals, this is also surprisingly complex and I can see why it is gaining popularity with the country’s bartenders.
By David T. Smith
Summer Fruit Cup