Here at Craft Gin Club, we love a good party - World Gin Day was the perfect excuse! This month’s Ginned! Magazine is packed full of tips for the perfect soiree, from the spectacular Vidda Tørr cocktails to canape recipes inspired by the countries that have contributed most to the gin boom.
Will you transform your front room into a speakeasy, and serve prohibition-era cocktails to your nearest and dearest.
Choose your gin cocktails wisely
You’ll need a range of drinks to cater to the many tastes that might be at your party. Fortunately, gin is the most versatile spirit with which to make cocktails. For your first party, we suggest serving the classics, classics that run most of the flavour gamut. Since you’ll be working on a budget, you’ll also have to keep in mind that you won’t want to serve cocktails with too many fancy ingredients. To lower your budget, have your friends bring a bottle or two of the mixers you specify.
Three types of gin will do - one juniper-led, one that emphasizes citrus notes and one that emphasizes floral notes.
Martini: the classic
All you’ll need on top of the gin is a bottle of dry vermouth (maybe two if your friends are thirsty)
Negroni: the bitter
A bottle of Campari and sweet vermouth are necessary to make what is now one of the UK’s and US’s hottest flashback drinks.
Gin & Tonic - the refresher
Simple - have a friend bring a case of premium tonic water! Just be sure to have the garnish that the distiller meant to be drank with their gin.
Gimlet - the citrus
This is just gin, lime juice and a touch of simple syrup which you can make at home. Plus, some of the limes will be used as garnish for your G&Ts.
Bees Knees - the floral
Normally we would go with an Aviation for a classic floral gin cocktail. But then you would have to buy bottles of crème de violette and maraschino liqueur which you won’t use in other cocktails. The Bees Knees is easy to make and although it’s citrus driven, the honey adds sweet floral notes.
Decamp to the garden for giant Copa glasses packed with ice, tonic, and tipple.
We are currently being blessed with beautiful British whether, but how long it will last is anyone's guess...Why not make the most of it by taking your gin party outside! Grab the picnic blanket and make gin pitchers to share with family and friends in copas, packed with ice and garnishes!
Be the hostess with the mostess (gin) by throwing your own gin tasting event. If you're already a CGC member you'll know there are hundreds of different gins out there and you should have quite a healthy collection (if you haven't drank it all already!)
Pick your gins
The most important part of a gin tasting? The gins! We like to organise our gin tastings around a theme, be it a part of the world or a particular style of gin. That way, you get a sense of cohesion. Can’t decide what to go for? Try one of every major style of gin: citrus, herbaceous, spicy and floral.
Decide whether you’re going in blind
We taste our gins blind, which means we don’t know which is which when we try it – and therefore can’t be influenced by anything other than flavour. To set up a blind tasting, pour a few measures of each gin into identical pitchers and stash the full bottles elsewhere. If you don’t have pitchers, wrap each bottle in tinfoil to disguise their identities. Just don’t forget which gin is which!
Sort out your criteria
What makes a gin good? At Craft Gin Club, we rank each gin on a scale of zero to 100, based on five characteristics: appearance in the glass (10 points), nose (20 points), palate (30 points), finish (20 points) and the story behind it (20 points), which is revealed after each gin has been scored on the other criteria. Whichever gins get the highest scores are awarded gold, silver and bronze medals. The gin with the most medals at the end wins!
Kit out your tasting table
The spread for a gin tasting is pretty simple. All you need is an empty glass for each participant, bottles of water to cleanse your palate, scorecards for each guest and, of course, a pen! We also like to keep premium tonic and ice nearby – so you can try each gin with a dash of ice or tonic, but also to have your favourite as a G&T at the end!