There are many different types of gin you may have heard of. Old Tom, London Dry, Plymouth Gin, Western, and Navy Strength. But what do they all mean?
In this blog I want to talk about Navy Strength Gin. What the definition is, how it got its name, and why you should be enjoying them!
What is a Navy Strength Gin?
At its core and by definition, a Navy Strength gin has to have an abv of at least 57%. So basically it's "just" a stronger gin (but it's so much more than that...).
The reason it got its name dates back to the 18th Century. In the British Navy, gin (and maybe rum) was stored on ships next to the gunpowder. Should the gin barrels spilt and get into the gunpowder, then this higher alcohol content would ensure that the gunpowder was not spoiled, and it would still explode.
You'll probably have seen more and more Navy Strength gins coming onto the market, and gaining great popularity. So is this just a fad? We don't think so!
It's important to remember that through distillation alcohol fumes pass through botanicals - which captures those aromatic oils which are soluble in alcohol. (They can also be macerated, which has a similar effect).
The higher alcohol content means that a greater amount of flavour is captured, and (potentially, when created with skill and a slower speed) imparted in the finished gin. They also tend to have a more rounded, and creamier mouthfeel, coating the mouth and imparting flavours.
This can make them great to enjoy in a gin and tonic, as you'll get a great proliferance of flavours, but they also work well in cocktails. When mixing, gin flavours can sometimes become overwhelmed, but with a Navy Strength gin they tend to hold their own in the mix a lot better.
Just a fad?
So.... it's not just a quicker way to become a little merry.... but rather a gin which tends to be packed full of flavour from the botanicals and a creamier mouthful than your usual gin!
We don't think this is just a fad... but what do you think?