Tanqueray’s gotten really good at building on founder Charles Tanqueray’s legendary recipe book, which can only be seen by current distiller Tom Nichol. Last year the company released (well, re-released) Tanqueray Malacca for a 100,000 bottle limited run, and this year, it’s a brand new (but still limited edition) product: Tanqueray Old Tom Gin.
Old Tom is a pretty ancient form of gin, the precursor to the familiar London Dry style. Old Tom is sweeter than London Dry, and I’ve found in the ones I’ve tasted that they are as bitey, but usually less piney than London Drys.
In the case of Tanqueray’s Old Tom, the bite is from the botanicals that usually sit in the background behind juniper, like clove or cinnamon spice, a sweet licorice taste on the tongue. This is a sweeter gin than you’ve probably tried, but I wouldn’t describe it as “sweet” (I realize that’s a bit contradictory). It’s sippable for sure, and a perfect fit in what might be a cocktail that’s named after it, the Tom Collins:
- in a Collins glass filled with ice, add:
- 1 1/2 oz gin
- 1/2 oz simple syrup
- 1 oz lemon juice
- stir, then top with club soda
- stir again and serve with a straw
- garnish with a lemon wedge and cherry