Tag Archives: Seagram’s Dry Gin

Gin Fight #5: Who won between Seagram’s and Knickerbocker

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I suppose, upon reflection, that the outcome to this head-to-head taste test was predictable. Neither you, the reader, nor I, the writer, found Seagram’s to be all that compelling of a gin. In all honesty, I wanted to be surprised by Seagram’s. I wanted to find out that secretly, Seagram’s was one of the better gins on the planet.

What I found was that their gin was little more than vodka with just enough aromatics around to make it gin.

Seagram’s Gin has a strong lemon aroma, with junipers floating around in the background. But when tasted, there was nothing there. Or rather, what was there was weak flavored, and uninspiring. This wasn’t like Plymouth, where restraint was intent. Here was a gin whose flavor felt as if it had simply given up. There was no “there” there.

Knickerbocker was the opposite. The aromatics were limited, with a hint of citrus. That made the flavor all that more surprising when it was tasted. Definitive lemon flavors popped on the palate, along with cardamon, coriander, and juniper. When compared one on one with Seagram’s, there was no doubt. Knickerbocker was the better gin, partly because it had been clearly made better, but also because Seagram’s was so empty in its approach to gin. For only the second time in these head to head fights, we agreed with one another. Both the reader’s bracket, and my bracket, have been updated.

Reader’s Poll: Better Gin – Seagram’s or Knickerbocker

What we have here is a battle of one of the world’s most popular gins going up against a rare and difficult to find gin.

Seagram’s has a long, involved history, and in their role as one of the world’s majors distillers, gin is just another item in their catalog that’s reported every year to the stockholder’s of Pernod Ricard, who now owns the brand.

Meanwhile, there’s New Holland Artisan Spirits, makers of Knickerbocker Gin. If Seagram’s is the K-Mart of the liquor world, New Holland is the small, independently owned shop that’s part of the revitalization effort downtown.  If New Holland is on Pernod Ricard’s radar at all, it’s likely only by accident.

So, taste test between the two, and then tell the rest of us – which is the better gin?

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The Poll will be up for a week and then I’ll announce the winner.

And yes, Knickerbocker gin is quite difficult to locate. Sorry.