G&T lovers rejoice - today is the day we've all been waiting for. Today is International Gin & Tonic Day, and if you didn't have an excuse to whip up one of the most popular cocktails of all time already, now's your chance.
We Irish have a worldwide reputation for knowing our stuff when it comes to fine whiskey, but did you know that we also have a talent for gin? The Irish gin scene has exploded over the last few years, with distillers around the country blending their best ingredients to create the popular spirit. We found our favourite seven Irish gins for you to peruse for the day that's in it.
Glendalough Wild Botanical Gin
Wild, fresh ingredients from the Glendalough woodlands in Co. Wicklow go into this delicate gin, with floral, spice and fruity notes blended together. The plants go into the still fresh, which is unique to Glendalough Distilleries and enables them to capture the crisp flavours of the valley. For true gin lovers, check out their seasonal blends - autumn is a fusion of berries and wild fruits.
Blackwater Small Batch Irish Gin
Blackwater is a classic dry gin, drawn from Waterford's rich history of gin distilling and exportation, using only the botanicals imported into Ireland by White’s of Waterford during the 19th century. Using local soft water and bright notes of coriander, lemon and cinnamon, this is the perfect G&T gin.
Bertha's Revenge Irish Milk Gin
Every good gin needs a good story behind it, and Bertha's Revenge from Cork has one of the bests. Named after one of the area's best-loved characters (a dairy cow named Bertha who lived to be 48 years old), the gin uses whey alcohol, which gives it a smoother, creamier finish - hence the milk reference. This is a soft and sweeter gin, with a long, spicy finish.
Drumshanbo Gunpowder Irish Gin
Hailing from Co. Leitrim, Drumshanbo has shot to being one of the most popular Irish gins in the country, and with good reason. Flavourings are inspired by the Far East, with no less than 12 botanicals (including Chinese lemon, gunpowder tea and Kaffir lime) melding together to form a complex beauty of a gin.
Dingle Original Gin
Even just the bottle of Dingle gin conjures up visions of stormy blue seas and days spent by the fire, G&T in hand. Dingle Gin has a pretty broad spec as a 'London dry gin', but its use of interesting botanicals, including fuchsia, bog myrtle, hawthorn and heather, makes it extremely unique.
Northern Ireland's first premium craft gin has a lot to live up to, but it delivers ten-fold in Shortcross Gin. Inspired by the lush gardens of Rademon Estate where it's made, the recipe includes plenty of fresh, bright flavours, like elderberries, green apples, orange and cassia.
Ha'Penny Dublin Dry Gin
Back to the capital, we have a classic gin that draws its inspiration from Victorian-era Dublin, and the flora of the Phoenix Park. The botanicals included are traditional with their own little twists, including blackberry and lavendar, which combine to make a gin that tastes like Dublin.