Round 3 Homemade Gin! And, yes, I am learning, albeit slowly. This batch is significantly better than my two previous efforts! (You can find my posts on those here: “I made Gin!!” and here: “Homemade Gin, Round 2” .)
This time I backed up significantly, starting much simpler. First of all I used just a very few botanicals. Obviously Juniper is required so that goes in. Coriander is very mild with a slight musty hay (think alfalfa) scent. It doesn’t so much as add flavor as it seems to add some complexity to the flavor. Then a very tiny bit of Cardamom, pepper, and lemon.
The second major change from previous batches was that I only steeped the botanicals for about 40 hours. (I was going for 48 hours but sadly my real job got in the way and didn’t allow that.)
Here’s the process for this batch:
Day 0: I assembled the following botanicals:
Juniper, 1 tablespoon
Coriander, 1 teaspoon
Cardamon, 1 Pod broken
Green peppercorn, 2 corns
All of these items I put into 375 ml of 100 proof Vodka. Unlike previous batched I did not grind up any of these ingredients.
+24 hours: I added the following.
Dried Lemon Peel, Approx 1/2 tsp
I also tried the gin, just to see how it was going. I was pleasantly surprised! No bitterness at all and mild flavors.
+42 hours: I strained all remains and remnants from the liquid.
At this point the Gin really tasted like ‘gin’! A bit light on the juniper but overall mildly spicy with just a hint of lemon. (Next time I’ll add a bit more citrus.) As expected it is not clear having a nice mild amber tinge to the gin. That’s easily fixable with an activated carbon filter (Brita, for example) but for the moment I’m pleased with the gin ‘as is’.
Finally I let it sit for a couple of days in the pantry, just to let the flavors meld (?). Then made a very cold, very welcome, Martini! It was totally acceptable. Certainly not worthy of even a single stem rating* of course, but a big step in the right direction!
Keep your eyes out for the results of Batch 4 coming soon to a blog near you.
* If you’re curious about what one vs. two stems means,
I refer you to the following:
***** Rating Definitions ****