How do you like your gin? In a martini, with an olive or a twist? Or maybe in a gin and tonic with ice and a slice? What about straight-up, or, at the very least, on the rocks? If your answer to that last one is “no thanks, that’s how I like my whisky but not my white spirits”, then you’re missing out – and here’s why.
The most compelling reason to drink gin with nothing added is what makes gin unique in the first place: the bespoke mix of botanicals, with the predominant one being juniper, but all chosen with care by the distiller. This is what makes gin different not only to a neutral grain spirit such as vodka but makes one gin taste completely different to another.
There are no less than nine different botanicals in MarGin, including aromatic cotton lavender and minty pink hyssop. Sipping MarGin neat is the best way to appreciate each of the botanicals that went in to making it but, more importantly, enjoy MarGin’s uncomplicated, clean taste and exceptionally smooth mouthfeel.
Drinking gin by itself is nothing new, however. Gin was drunk neat when it first came to prominence in 18th-century London, though swigging it straight from the bottle rather than sipping it thoughtfully from a glass is what earned gin the nickname of ‘mother’s ruin’.
Fast forward 100 or so years and tastemakers began to realise that gin’s complex flavour made it a great base for mixing: first the G&T that became the preferred sundowner for the expats of the British Empire, then the original mixologists of early-20th century America who made gin the essential ingredient of classic cocktails such as the martini, gimlet and clover club.
Along the way, though, it was forgotten that gin tastes great alone – or with very little added. First off, make sure you’ve got the right glassware: a rocks glass will bring the delicate aromas of MarGin close to the nose and enhance the intensity of the botanicals.
Try playing around with temperature: adding a couple of ice cubes (made from filtered water) will reveal the flavours of our gin more slowly as the spirit warms up. Storing MarGin in the freezer as you would a vodka will likewise change its texture, making it more viscous and with a fuller mouthfeel.
Of course, it’s all a matter of personal preference. Try MarGin served over ice with a squeeze of lime or the smallest splash of tonic (or both). There are no rules, though, and however you drink it, do take your time…
If you’d like to buy a bottle of MarGin, you can find it online – click here.
The history of the ‘white fiver’
The Bank of England first introduced the 5 pound (£5) denomination in the year 1793, producing the ‘Series A’ fiver by copper plate on paper by Henry Portal of Hampshire. The ‘white fiver’ as this note came to be known remained in circulation until 1961 – surviving through the tenures of 15 chief cashiers of the Bank of England.
In 1860 the Times newspaper described the note by referring to “its superiority as very striking both as regards to the clearness of execution of the design and the watermark of the paper”
This note became the inspiration for the MarGin label.