Aviation Gin

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Aviation Gin is Batch distilled in Portland Oregon and fits perfectly into the classification of “American Gin”*. Distillers Lee Medoff and Christian Krogstad have teamed up with Seattle mixologist Ryan Magarian to produce a new gin based on the fuller-bodied Dutch style with rye neutral grain spirit and what they describe as a ‘botanical democracy’ of Juniper, Cardamom, Coriander, Lavender, Anise, Sarsaparilla and Orange Peel.

It is big and bold, but unlike the majority of gins, the juniper is very much in the background with citrus and the other flavours in the front.

I was drawn to Aviation initially due to the bottle design. The retro, Art deco look was really appealing – it wouldn’t look out of place on the shelf of an old American Drugs store.

The main botanicals are:

  • Juniper
  • Cardamom
  • Coriander
  • Lavender
  • Anise
  • Sarsaparilla
  • Orange peel

Nose:

You are first hit with a lovely burst of floral notes with a hint of juniper in the background and a slight medicinal tone. There are also sweet notes which are provided by the sarsaparilla, lavender and the orange peel.

Palate:

Taken neat and you get rich, floral and savoury notes of lavender, cardamom and citrus, with sweet grains and earthiness. This earthiness gives it a slight medicinal nose which some find off-putting

Taken with tonic and this earthiness still comes through but you also get a lovely hint of citrus flavours and a sweetness from the sarsaparilla.

Conclusion

This is a diverse gin, and don’t let the strong bouquet fool you. It makes a really refreshing gin and tonic, and according to the Aviation Website, a classic Aviation. It’s a gin that can be sipped neat or on the rocks, but would also be fantastic as a base to a great martini.

Score 8.5/10

Price: £30 – £35

Stockiest: The Whisky Exchange.com

* Aviation describes “American Gin” as follows:
“In pioneering a new dry style especially for the American palate, Aviation takes advantage of the rich, floral and savory flavor notes of alternative botanicals such as lavender, cardamom, and sarsaparilla to capture the lushness, spice, creativity, and freshness of the Pacific Northwest.”

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