Following on from Milly Adams’ previous post about The Gin Foundry’s Ginvent Calendar, I was invited to pop down to Mr Fogg’s Gin Parlour to meet the two gents behind the desirable item.
Brothers Olivier and Emile Ward (pictured above) have been interested in gin for many years and know more or less everything there is to know about the intoxicating liquid. For instance, did you know the largest consumer of gin in the world is The Philippines? Spain is second, the USA is third. The UK staggers in at fourth place. Surely, we can do better - and that’s one reason behind the Ginvent Calendar.
All twenty-four, yes, twenty-four (count them!) gins have been chosen by the brothers after much research and careful thought - this year’s selection being mainly from the UK and Europe. One is the award-winning Napue from Finland - it won the International Wine and Spirit Competition’s 2015 Spirits Award against 150 competitors..
Another is Sharish, which, to keep it unscientific, turns from blue to pink when the tonic is added simply because magic is involved… or, perhaps, it’s to do with the plant essence reacting with the quinine which means that - no, it’s simpler to say it’s magic.
The Calendar has a different gin for each day and, if you can restrain yourself, there will be a live Twitter Tasting (@GinFoundry) each evening at 7.30pm (UK time) so everyone can share their thoughts about that day’s tipple.
But - hang on - it’s not just gin. What about the tonic? I asked Emile and he said that his preferred choice would be Fever Tree (other tonics are available), but urged experimentation with tonic as with gin. Which is the very essence of what Ginvent is about: exploring new tastes and widening one’s horizons.
Fancy giving it a try? It may seem on the pricey side, but what you get is expertise and dedication from a couple of gin-lovers who don’t take gin lightly. They even infuse their own gins, experimenting all the time. Apparently, good gin can be created in four hours! Crikey. But if you’ve got the taste for it and a little patience (twenty-four days to be exact), you can enjoy gin throughout December - finishing just in time for Christmas Day.
If all that seems too much to take in, I think you should visit The Gin Foundry’s Pop-Up shop on the 16th/17th/18th December, at the Vinyl Factory in Soho, London. Information about this, the Ginvent Calendar, and more, is all at www.ginfoundry.com/ginvent/
Oh. Just in case you were wondering which was my favourite gin from the evening? The City of London Christopher Wren Gin.
Whoops, caught me red-handed… So, one for the road?