Tonight, I Tanqueray.
This is a gin that has graced my shelves a few times in the last year, but it always disappears so quickly and I have never managed to get around to writing my thoughts down. Tonight, this changes.
To many, Tanqueray is eponymous with truly high-quality gin; it is the benchmark that others are measured against and it is a well-deserved reputation.
Tanqueray’s botanical list is fairly short, numbering only four…
- Juniper Berries
- Coriander Seed
- Angelica Root
- Liquorice Root
What no citrus?
It’s presented in a distinctive cocktail-shaker shaped bottle which is instantly recognisable on the shop shelf or the back-bar.
Uncorking the bottle, or rather unscrewing it, and giving it a good sniff reveals everything you would expect from a London Dry gin. It is very juniper-forward and in spite of its 43.1% ABV, there isn’t much of a whiff of alcohol.
Tasting the stuff neat follows-through with the juniper-heavy experience. It is smooth, balanced and creamy without any harshness from that high alcohol content (not that surprising, being quadruple distilled). The coriander is present but subtle and the sweet earthiness of the two roots holds it all together very well.
Mixing Tanqueray with tonic water rewards you with a tremendous G&T; it delivers a massive juniper hit and the sweet creaminess balances with the quinine very well. It has a beautiful, biting, dry finish. This really is the Spinal Tap of gin and tonic; someone has taken a good gin and dialled it up to 11. It is like drinking some super-charged G&T drawn out of someone’s fevered dreams about gin and tonic. It is everything I look for in G&T writ large.
Tanqueray is a forthright, loud gin that delivers quality in spades. It really goes to show how you don’t need much to make a great gin. There are no gimmicks, no exotic fruits or outlandish distilling practices, just a simple London Dry gin which really delivers the goods.
Now the bottle is empty. Such is the way of gin.