Yesterday afternoon, I went to check out a new distillery in Brooklyn, just a couple of blocks from my last apartment. Started by a laid-off bond trader and his girlfriend, they're making gin from scratch, which is the kind of enterprise I can get behind.
They have gorgeous equipment:
One of the owners, talking about the wheat they buy from a farmer near Ithaca and how they process it into flour and turn that into a thin, fermented slurry that becomes the base spirit.
They were in the middle of a tour when we got there, so we tasted the product before learning anything about it. We tasted it at room temperature, chilled, and with tonic. I have to say that while I liked it as a spirit, it didn't taste like gin to me. The ginger and rosemary flavors had the strongest impact, followed by lemon peel. I didn't get much juniper flavor at all. On the tour, the guy mentioned that they refine the juniper berries so that they're only using the lighter, more aromatic notes. But the thing is, I *like* that heavy, pine-resin juniper taste and scent. That's what I want when I want gin. So I wouldn't buy this expecting it to fulfill my gin requirements. But if I were looking for something else that's aromatic and tasty and could be used in drinks that are either sweet or not, I would certainly not be averse to Breuckelen gin.