Gin has been around for centuries. The word gin is a shortened version of the older English word genever which is derived from the Latin word for juniper, juniperus. This is because the one ingredient that all gins have in common is juniper - a dark purple berry (or pine cone masquerading as a berry) that is responsible for giving gin its predominant woody, pine-like flavour.
Knowing that berries are some of the healthiest foods, it is perhaps not surprising that gin finds its roots in medicine. First introduced as a medicinal liquor, juniper berries have a range of health benefits (gin too when drunk in moderation). But this did not last long as it became a popular commercial commodity as people found new ways to drink gin. Perhaps the most well known is the trusted gin and tonic.
The original G&T dates back to the 19th Century when British officers in India added quinine to their soda water to help prevent malaria. Gin, along with sugar and lime, was the perfect complement to balance the bitterness of quinine, making the drink more palatable. Today we still enjoy drinking gin and tonic be it pink, blue or purple!
But why do we love gin so much? Gin is known for its distinct, yet versatile taste as you can infuse many different flavours into it. Craft distillers use this to their advantage by creating unique combinations of locally sourced botanicals (plants or parts of plants like bark, root or leaves) that result in exciting flavours.
These distinct aromatic and taste experiences are what gin lovers are after and likely the main reason for gin making such a big comeback on the cocktail scene. Gin features as the main ingredient in many cocktails and anyone can make them at home. Enjoying this classy yet thrilling spirit has never been easier.
Becoming a gin connoisseur is uncomplicated. Simply follow your favourite cocktail recipe and add 1st Principles craft gin for a delightful gin cocktail. We have a Classic Dry Gin crafted to complement other flavours in your cocktail, a Cocktail Gin that holds its own in a tall drink, a naturally sweet Honeybush Gin and a Rooibos Gin that opens a whole new taste avenue to explore.
Life is short, so push aside the tried-and-trusted for delicious, refreshing gin cocktails with a twist. Better yet, drinking 1st Principles is tasty but also guilt-free as we use unadulterated produce and eco-friendly processes that respect that very nature we depend on for our ultra-local and unique botanicals.