Saturday, June 22, 2024

Aviation Gin

July 9, 2010 by  
Filed under Bottle Reviews

AV_GinHmmm… An unusual nose for a gin. There’s an initial sweetness and citrus, with the scent of cardamom and a little nuttiness, as well. Little to none of the juniper note we commonly expect from a gin.

The flavor is sweet and spicy with a lot of cardamom and bittersweet flavors from dried orange peel. From their published information, there’s also anise seed and lavender, and I can taste them both. There are also other odd flavors like clove, cinnamon and allspice all coming out on the palate. I am unsure if those are from individual ingredients, or flavors coming from the sasparilla.

This is most certainly not a typical London Dry juniper-heavy gin. It’s a heavy gin with a viscous, almost oily, feel and nice lingering taste that stays with you. A sip feels very full and earthy, probably because of the rye from which it’s made. It finishes with an odd mix of lavender and spice, with a slightly minerally and almost briny after taste, and a very slight burn to the throat, as if from a rye whiskey.

Aviation will go well in a lot of cocktails, but perhaps not some of the usual ones. This would make an interesting martini, but likely would not please anyone wanting a traditional London Dry gin. And don’t waste it with tonic, or in a gimlet. But Aviation would be an outstanding gin for older cocktails where the gin is expected to be very present, likes in its namesake Aviation cocktail, or in a Last Word, Corpse Reviver #2, or one of our new favorites, the Hanky Panky.

First time I tried this, a few years ago, I was not a fan. It was far and away too odd for me. But having graduated from martins and gin and tonic, and now greatly appreciating other traditional and pre-Prohibition cocktails using gin in it’s many expressions, Aviation is my new friend for the summer.

$28.45 at Oregon State Liquor Stores


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  2. […] I’ve mixed Imbue in what I’ve called the Oregroni, along with Calisaya and Aviation Gin, two other fine Oregon spirits. I plan to try it in more martini-like cocktails in the future, and […]