Hayman's Old Tom Gin 750ml

SKU #1044298 94 points Wine Enthusiast

 A relative newcomer to the gin landscape, this is the proper gin to use for a Tom Collins cocktail. It intentionally leans sweet, but itís balanced with the right amount of alcohol bite, a lightly piny scent, and faint herbal and citrus peel notes. If using this 19th-centurystyle sweetened gin for other cocktails, be sure to hold off on adding sugar.  (4/ 2012)

K&L Notes

Old Tom Gin is a botanically-rich and slightly sweet version of gin that results in a balanced and mild tipple. This is ideal for a variety of classic cocktails, such as the Martinez, a San Francisco original and the precursor to the Martini. In a shaker combine 1 part Old Tom Gin with 1 dash Bitters, 2 dashes Maraschino Liqueur and 2 parts sweet Vermouth. Shake well and strain into a martini glass. Garnish with a slice of lemon.

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Price: $26.99

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By: Mahon McGrath |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 11/28/2009  | Send Email
Once upon a time, the cocktail that became THE cocktail, the Martini, was a lot less dry. And before that, even, its progenitors, the first gin & vermouth based drinks, the Turf Club-Martinez-Martini family, were made with Italian vermouth and a lightly sweetened style of gin called Old Tom. When the John Collins crossed over from England, it was eventually re-christened a Tom Collins, in part because it was generally made with Old Tom gin. The spirit got around. Of course, up until very recent times, there was no good substitute for this category of gin. Old Tom had long since sunk into oblivion - and for that matter, up until recently, no one had much missed it. With the current efflorescence of classic cocktails, however, all that changed and Hayman's is a welcome addition for those who want to drink in a bit of history. Resurrected from a family recipe from the time of the spirits heyday, Hayman's is a delightful and authentic version of an Old Tom gin. This is a less aggressive style of gin than a London Dry; while juniper is in the foreground it quickly yields to a more generally perfumed nose, with a softer, rounder, gentler taste and mouthfeel. The sweetness here is not on the order of a liqueur, more like off-dry. The fascinating thing is how many of the antique cocktail recipes that call for an Old Tom gin are good as drinks in their own right and not merely of interest as retrospective curiosities. If you haven't yet tried this, the recipe given above is not a bad place to start, though I'd say go with a twist of lemon peel, as opposed to a slice. And, if you've got this far and you don't already own books by Ted "Dr Cocktail" Haigh or David Wondrich, they are good resources for further recipes and elucidation.

Additional Information:

Varietal:

Gin

Alcohol Content (%): 40