In 2018, the flavored gin subcategory experienced a 78 percent volume sales increase globally, according to IWSR Drinks Market Analysis.
Of course, by definition, all gins can be described as flavored spirits. Typically juniper-forward, the distillate traditionally sees a neutral spirit infused with fistfuls of botanicals to provide a complex, nuanced beverage.
But the emerging subcategory of infused gins reimagines which ingredients can be used to flavor the increasingly popular spirit. Ideal for summer sipping, the category is rich in options, ranging from fruity to floral to herbaceous and earthy to sweet.
From bottles that are ideal for fruit-forward spritzes, to floral infusions perfect for modern twists on classic cocktails, here are six of our favorite flavored gins, tasted and ranked.
In native Great Britain, tart, plum-like damsons are commonly used to make jams and preserves. New Hampshire’s Tamworth Distilling utilizes the fruit as the main flavor-giving ingredient alongside juniper, bitter orange, anise hyssop, and hops, in this tart, earthy gin. It’s ripe, but not as sweet as many of the other options on this list, and it pairs deliciously with a range of flavored sodas and ginger ale. Average price: $60.
A brand-new release from British distiller Boodles Gin, this pink-hued rhubarb- and strawberry-infused offering is a fun, fruity gin, ideal for summer imbibing. With strawberry and cream hard candy notes, this spirit pours a delicious spritz, and mixes well in tropical sunrise cocktails. Garnish with fresh berries for the ultimate poolside sipper. Average price: $24.
A pioneer of the flavored-gin category, Whitley Neill offers no less than eight original infusions, ranging from Quince to Parma Violet to Rhubarb and Ginger. Our pick of the bunch is the Blood Orange, which is infused with Sicilian fruit and reminded our tasters of fancy Italian soda. It’s refreshingly tart and acidic, but simultaneously rich and sweet, which makes it perfect for a gin and sonic, where a healthy pour of gin is topped with equal parts seltzer and tonic water. Average price: $30.
Lee Spirits flavors this gin using dried Provencal lavender buds. The resulting gin is a vibrant and earthy distillate, which can be used to give a lavender twist to classic cocktails. Enjoy with Champagne and lemon juice in a floral French 75, or keep things simple by topping with fresh lemonade and garnishing with a lemon wedge and a stick of lavender. Average price: $33.
A limited-edition release inspired by summer, Hendrick’s Midsummer Solstice is an alluring, highly perfumed gin. It smells like fresh petals and candied fruit loops, and tastes like a sweet fruit tart. Juniper and black pepper notes remind you that this is gin and not flavored liqueur, and, though the finish is sweet, it remains balanced. Drink with soda and garnish with fresh flowers. Average price: $39.
A recent poll ranked the lemon drizzle as Britain’s favorite cake. To capture the essence of the classic citrus- and simple syrup-infused sponge cake, Sipsmith infuses its London Dry gin with vanilla, sun-dried lemon peel, lemon verbena, and peeled lemons. The result is an inviting, sweet-smelling spirit that evokes a golden-brown cake crust and candied lemon rind. It’s drier on the palate than you might expect, making it ideal for a zesty G&T or an extra citrusy Gimlet. Average price: $40.