- Food & Drink
In a change from telling you all about the fascinating things I’ve done today, here’s a post about what I’ve drunk today. And surprise, surprise, it’s gin. But instead of a sturdy, stiff-upper-lip-and-sodomy English gin, I’ve gone native and I’m sipping on a wild, romantic and really quite talkative Irish gin.
Cork Dry Gin is, in fact, the local moonshine, brewed in the metropolis of Midleton by the same people who make Jameson whiskey. I’ve been on a tour of the distillery and by the clever use of elbows, well aimed kicks and screaming: “MEEE!!!” I managed to be one of the 8 people from our tour party who got to do a whiskey tasting. This taught me that Jameson is the nicest whiskey available in the Jameson Distillery Bar. It also got me a certificate. I’m now an official, Jameson-sanctioned whiskey taster and that qualification will be going on my CV.
But woman cannot live by whiskey alone and, as they turn water into gin a few miles from me, I’d be remiss in my drinking if I didn’t sample it.
Day or night gin? It’s 37.5%, so it’s an easy-going day gin. Perhaps they put all the alcohol into the whiskey.
Smell? I’m getting concerned about the number of gins I try that smell like fish. I began to think it was down to my glasses and instituted a rigorous pre-tasting wash and rinse regime, but I’ve changed country, glasses, dishwasher and detergent and still there are gins that smell like fish. The Cork Dry Gin website claims it has a mystery ingredient that gives it a uniquely refreshing flavour profile. Could it be fish? Specifically, tinned tuna?
It also has a harsh, nail polish remover, hairspray and white spirit smell that brutalises its way through your nostrils and opens them wide so you can really enjoy the end note of tuna.
How does it taste? It has a very soft, oily mouthfeel that’s pleasant as you swirl it around and wait for the taste of tinned tuna to bloom. It doesn’t. Instead, there’s a lot of spice – particularly coriander – and then a good, sharp citrus finish. Very punchy and a little bit brutish. It delivers all the obvious flavours you’d associate with gin and I can see why it’d be many people’s go to bottle when they want to make a G&T.
Buy it? The duty on booze is ferocious here and a 35cl bottle cost about €11 in Tesco. An online search reveals you can get a 70cl bottle for €19–20 (£16–17), which I think is a tiny bit steep for an entry level gin. If you don’t particularly care and just want a white liquid that tastes of GIN, then this is a safe option but I’d be inclined to pay a bit more for a bottle of something that’ll taste interesting and get you drunk.