- Jonathan Winters
Stubbornly Different American Gin Review
It’s got a mule on the label, what more do you need to know?
Review Stubbornly Different American Gin
Made in: Stanfordville, New York, by Taconic Distillery
Method: Pot Still
40% alcohol/80 proof
Botanicals 6: Juniper, star anise, lemon zest, lime zest, coriander, angelica root.
Style: Modern Gin
Made by a New York State distillery known far more for their bourbon and rye, Taconic Distillery gave gin a whirl, and created a gin that was different, or as they say stubbornly different. The difference is primarily in the fact, that like many other whiskey distilleries, they are taking advantage of an old technique, barrel aging - something a whiskey distiller well knows.
In doing my research on this gin, I found I had a lot of questions - so I reached out to Taconic Distillery to see if I could get some answers. Especially as to why a bourbon maker decided to make a gin. Ironically it didn’t happen because they were playing with bourbon or rye, but because they were playing with barrel aging rum, and the supplier got a bit sticky when it came to price. So instead of barrel aging rum, they decided to bourbon barrel age a gin.
Barrel aging is an old technique only now beginning to come back into favor as distillers experiment with new, and old, techniques. This gin is barrel aged six months - something most gin makers are very afraid to do, as gin often ages badly. But honestly these guys nailed it.
Citrus is the dominant note on the nose, but it’s nicely backed by coriander, and juniper.
This is a true sipping gin. it’s easy, smooth, crisp, elegant, and light. It was so good with ice I didn’t even want to test it for mixability but of course I had to. But not before enjoying the flavor profile.
There is a certain subtlety to this gin. It’s a gin that celebrates technique and offers mellow, but distinct flavors of citrus, juniper, licorice, spice, coriander with a hint of nuttiness.
On the tongue this is cool, and crisp, with a softness and lingering lemon taste.
This was wonderful gin without any mixers, but how would it stand up in a cocktail?
Well in a martini it was very good, but it lost some of that lovely crispness, and exhibited a hint of olive, even before I added one. It was a very good solid martini.
It was nice in a gin and tonic, although better with the Mediterranean tonic than the more traditional one - as the quinine taste clashed with the strong citrus.
Lastly I went for a Gin Basil Smash, to see how it felt in a more flavor forward cocktail. It was quite good. I think this would probably fare very well though in a French 75, or a Corpse Reviver. The flavor should hold up well.
This is an enjoyable sipping gin which stood up well to everything I threw at it. It’s well balanced, smooth, and crisp. It’s worthy for a gin fan who’d like a gin which is a little bit different, but still quite recognizable as gin.
Overall rating: 86. A good gin with a nice smooth finish.
What you need to know about reviews: All my reviews are my honest opinions based upon my own personal tasting. I am NOT a paid reviewer, and no compensation was given, or expected. I may from time to time choose to do a second review and amend my opinion of a product, should I feel like it, and find my review criteria has evolved, or that I’ve found it different at a later date. That said, as I’m unlikely to repurchase anything I thought was less than very good to excellent, it would be by chance or at the request of a distiller who thought I rated them very unfairly - BUT even then, whatever you get will always be my honest opinion.