Nearly 20 years spanned between my first taste of gin and my second. (No, I did not first try it when I was 10 years old, but it’s flattering of you to assume so). Being that tree sap is not a taste I wanted to acquire – aside from maple syrup – I shunned gin from that first taste forward. Urged to try it again several months ago, I did so grudgingly.
Surprisingly, it was just fine – showing me that I should make room in my liquor cabinet for the right kinds of gin. It wasn’t until a recommendation from bartender Chris Faber at the Naga Bar (note: I hear he has moved to Bellevue’s Lot 3), however, that found one I truly like. Aviation Gin is mellow, doesn’t have a dominating juniper taste and makes a great drink. Trolling through the distiller’s Web site (often good sources for recipes), I found this fantastic cocktail:
Muddle the kiwi in a cocktail shaker, and add the ice, gin, liqueur, lime juice and simple syrup. Shake well to chill. Strain into ice-filled Collins glass and add club soda. Stir gently and serve. Note: I chose to serve it “up,” meaning in a chilled cocktail glass without ice (i.e., martini-style), and double-strained it to remove the seeds.
This drink is so good that I made it several nights in a row. St. Germain (a delicate elderflower liqueur) was already one of my favorite liqueurs, and I’m always happy to bring out that gorgeous bottle. With this new gin and recipe, I have more reasons to do so. If you are a gin-avoider, Aviation might convert you.