Despite the fact that there are more classic cocktails made with gin than any other liquor, the spirit itself is not nearly as popular as vodka, whiskey, or rum. Perhaps it’s the fact that the juniper-based drink tastes like what we’d expect a Christmas tree to taste like. Personally, we’re all about that flavor, yet we also understand not everyone enjoys their cocktail with a side of pine needles. Whatever your feelings about gin may be, we think the spirit’s been getting the short end of the stick cocktail straw these days. In an effort to correct that, we’ve rounded up five fast facts you might not know about gin:
Just add water: If you’re looking to compare different gins, here’s the trick: Dilute each type of gin (at room temperature) with equal parts water. This will reveal the particular qualities of each gin, as well as the flaws. (Not that we’d refuse any of them regardless.)
There’s a reason you don’t shoot it: Ever see people doing shots of gin in the same way they down vodka and tequila? Nope, and there’s a reason for that: Gin just wasn’t born that way! In fact, the botanicals in gin are meant to be used in cocktails, coming alive when mixed with other ingredients. Ooh la la.
The Gimlet was created to fight scurvy: The idea of open sea travel might seem luxurious, but back in the old days, it often meant the threat of serious diseases. Chief among these: scurvy, the lack of vitamin C. The British Royal Navy mixed lime juice with their gin in an effort to combat this, and thus the Gimlet was born. Ahoy!
It has other health benefits too: Juniper berries boast a host of medicinal benefits, including fighting off coughs, offering relief from arthritis, and aiding digestion. Consumed in moderation, gin can help your blood circulation, keep your skin young, and — get this! — actually flush out toxins from your liver. Sign us up!
Gin is Mother’s Ruin: Over the years, gin has earned the nickname of “The Mother’s Ruin.” No one really knows the official story as to why, but rumor has it that it’s due to the inexpensive spirit being popular in whorehorses, as well as being used to induce abortions. Talk about uplifting.
FUN FACT: Did you know gin is essentially just flavored vodka? Not only that, but making your own is practically foolproof. Pick up the Homemade Gin Kit and get ready to transform that generic bottle of vodka into one-of-a-kind gin.