Did you Know? - 21 facts about gin


Juniper Berries are the main ingredient in gin.


Juniper berries aren't actually berries – they are a type of seed cone.


Other than juniper, orris root and coriander seeds are most widely used in gin production.


Coriander seeds provide a citrus flavour to a gin.


Gin is an English drink although first discovered in Holland


Gin is short for Genever, from the Dutch word jenever which derives from juniperus – the Latin for juniper


The term “Dutch Courage” comes from the 17th century where Genever (or Dutch gin) was used by English soldiers for its calming effects before battle, its warming properties on the body and the bravery-inducing effects of Genever on Dutch soldiers.


Not all gin is clear - Modern Dutch genever, aka “golden gin” acquires a pale gold tint through barrel aging. And unfiltered gins appear naturally cloudy. 

Image by William Warby


Gin can be known as “Mother’s Ruin” as it was thought that the spirit induced miscarriage.


Gin is essentially a flavoured vodka - making your own at home is as simple as 6 steps.

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According to EU guidelines the minimum amount of alcohol a gin can have to be officially classified as gin is 37.5%.


Tonic water is called “Indian Tonic Water” as in the 19th century India and other tropical posts of the British Empire, medicinal quinine was given to British soldiers in a mixed of soda and sugar (to mask its bitter taste) to help prevent malaria.


“Compound gin” is gin that has flavours and botanicals added to the neutral spirit without the need for re-distillation.


“Bathtub Gin” originated in the 1920s as a term applied to amateur gin, batched in tubs with grain alcohol, juniper berries, other ingredients and water added and then  allowed it all to steep.


Sloe Gin is Infused High Proof Gin made with Sloe Berries.

Image by Louis Hansel


Dennis Thatcher historically said  "I don’t know what reception I’m at, but for God’s sake - give me a Gin and Tonic."


“The gin and tonic has saved more Englishmen’s lives, and minds, than all the doctors in the Empire.” Winston Churchill


The country that consumes the most gin in all the world is Spain, at an average of 1.07 litres per person per year.


London Dry Gin doesn't have to be distilled in London, however Plymouth gin must be distilled in Plymouth.


The biggest selling gin brand in the world is Gordon’s Gin.


Sipsmith established the first gin distillery in London in 2008 since 1820 due to a change in the law in the early 2000's