How writing about gin became one man’s life, I’ll never know and always be jealous. Aaron Knoll’s Gin: The Art and Craft of the Artisan Revival has its origins in his blog, The Gin is In. The blog reviews gins from around the world, focusing on ‘the local, the craft and the states.’ Started in 2009 and updated weekly, no wonder Knoll had the content for Gin.
From the origins and uses of the juniper berry, to women’s role in distilling, Gin boasts a wealth of knowledge. Knoll details how gin is made – creating the base spirit, to the botany of gin and its flavours (juniper, coriander, angelica and a bunch of other things I had never heard of). He gives a detailed step-by-step of how to taste gin properly (sips, not shots), and goes through the many different types of gin (contemporary, classic, aged, sloe, cordial, etc.)
The key section of the book for the gin lovers will be the Tasting of Gin, followed by the Drinking of Gin. Working his way around the world, Knoll gives his top gins and distilleries – New Zealand’s own Lighthouse Gin and Vaione Pacific Gin even make the cut. Knoll follows this up with his top gin drinks, how to make them, and the best places around the world to drink them. From Berlin for a G&T, to Florence for a negroni, this book has given me an excellent travel itinerary.
The book itself is beautiful – laid out in an easy-to-read format, and beautiful with the dust cover on or off. Gin is an excellent gift for the gin-lover in your life, and perhaps if you’re lucky, they’ll take the hint and add a bottle of Knoll’s homemade infused gin recipe for you.
Reviewed by Kimaya McIntosh
Gin: The Art and Craft of the Artisan Revival
by Aaron Knoll
Published by Jacqui Small LLP