No:3 Gin is one of those spirits that, along with Tanqueray No:10, is one of the favourite brands of both myself and externally acclaimed gin aficionados. In addition to this high status, it has a bottle that attracts many folks and, even in the short time that I have had one sitting atop my cocktail cabinet, it has been admired by almost all of my visitors.
No:3 Gin (or Number 3 St. James Street, to give it a fuller title) is named after the address of Berry Brothers & Rudd, wine merchant to the House of Windsor. The bottle is in the style of an early Genever case bottle and the key embossed on the front is a reflection of the parlour key in BBR’s establishment.
The gin is actually made in the Netherlands and is made using 6 botanicals:
1) On its own
Nose: Full, fresh and green; lots of piney juniper with a hint of cardamom – lovely.
Taste: Initially, silkiness with some building power; juniper upfront, then a clean citrus and slightly creamy middle, before a juniper finish with cardamom at the very end. The flavour of this in is long and very tasty.
2) Gin & Tonic
Plenty of sweet, spicy cardamom on the nose, which follows through on the taste. It’s really rather lovely, being full of ripe and juicy flavours: citrus, juniper and an earthy spiciness, all tied up with a cardamom cord of flavour. Very refreshing and succulent.
A very silky Martini that initially deceives you into thinking it’s a bit soft, but the finish redefines it as a drink of sophistication and power. Strong cardamom and juniper-pine finish, with plenty of citrus, too. Serving this gin ice-cold is the only way to go. I love it.
Deep, complex and intense, with plenty of juniper coming through. This is a textbook Negroni that is bursting with flavour and should be right up the street of the Negroni aficionado. Not for the faint-hearted, but I think it’s just peachy.
No:3 Gin is one of the few gins made in the Classic style that have really added something to the gin market in the last couple of years. I really enjoyed all of the drinks that I tried and, when asked what my favourite was, was torn between the Gin & Tonic and the Negroni.
No:3 Gin is available for around £34 for 70cl from Waitrose or for around £32 for 70cl from The Whisky Exchange.