The Tasting Panel magazine


Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 84 of 116

LAUNCH PAD Next Gin-eration O story and photos by Richard Carleton Hacker NOLET’S FINEST DRY GINS ARE THE NEW FACE OF GIN n Friday, October 8, 2010, the Lobby Bar of the St. Regis, Monarch Beach resort in Southern California made liquid history by being the first to pour the world’s most expensive gin, the $700 limited-edition NOLET’S Reserve. Only 494 individually-numbered bottles resulted from the premier distillation. And, as indicated by its gold metal- lic label and elegant presentation packaging, this is definitely not your grandfather’s gin. In fact, it is not a gin that anyone—neither mixologists nor consumers—has experienced before. Wheat-based and pot-distilled, this full-bodied 104.6-proof gin was cre- ated for sipping rather than mixing. Consequently, it is best appreciated in a snifter or Riedel glass, chilled and neat, or at most, with a single ice cube. However, realities dictate that show- casing a $125 Nolet Reserve Martini on your menu (perhaps in a Baccarat glass) is not out of the question. Although their gin is new, the Nolet name represents 319 years of Dutch distilling history, and is personified by the Nolet family’s 10th and 11th gen- erations, Carolus H. J. Nolet and his sons Carl Jr. and Bob. Moreover, since their Ketel One Vodka was launched in America in 1990, it has become one of the country’s most called-for clear spirits. So why, with the spectacular success of Ketel One, did the Nolets now decide to produce a super-pre- mium London-style dry gin? “The history of our distillery in Schiedam, Holland is the history of The 10th and 11th generations of the Nolet family, Carolus Sr. and his son Carl Jr., proudly unveil their NOLET’S Dry Gin Silver and NOLET’S Dry Gin The Reserve in Carolus Sr.’s home. “We are redefining the category,” says Carl Jr., “using ingredients in a complex way in which they have never been used before. It is my father’s way of saying, ‘This is the new face of gin.’” gin,” says the family’s patriarch, Carolus Sr. “But I was the first one who decided not to produce our original gin, after joining the company and seeing the worldwide popularity of vodka, even though I had already been thinking about a new type of gin. Now, after our incredible success with Ketel One, this new style of gin came back in my mind. I thought, ‘This is the time to create another worldwide brand with a top-quality taste.’ So I studied and worked on it for over 40 years—and the last ten years we worked on it extensively—because I wanted to make something different, to create a new way for gin to be enjoyed, not just now, but for decades to come.” To accomplish his goal, Carolus Sr. spent three years traveling the world in search of botanicals that had never been used in combination before. Of course, the usual suspects—including juniper, citrus, orris root, licorice, and cassia—are there, but with the exception of herbaceous verbena and spicy saffron, Carolus Sr. refuses to divulge the rest, even to his marketing people. “I want this to be a journey in taste while sipping 84 / the tasting panel / december 2010

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Tasting Panel magazine - December2010