35 maple street, botanicals, california, G&T, GANDT, gin, tonic, uncle val's, wow -

Everyone loves Uncle Val

It’s great to have an uncle in the business…





And if the business is gin, then Uncle Val is the best uncle anyone could ever ask for.  We were recently introduced to Uncle Val’s Botanical Gin, from a small California distillery called 35 Maple Street and, WOW!

Having, as I do, a strong preference for traditional London dry gins, I was skeptical about a gin bearing a label that promised, in big, fancy letters, a healthy dose of botanicals.  But from the moment I uncorked the bottle, I found Uncle Val’s to be unlike any gin I’ve ever had. 

Lovely botanical/floral notes leap from bottle to nose immediately.  And to tell you the truth, at first, that only upped my level of skepticism.  I usually find that when a gin has a powerful botanical presence on the nose, those botanicals are too much on the palate.  The gin seems to lose its fundamental “ginness”.  Such is not the case with Uncle Val’s.

The secondary botanicals of lemon, cucumber, sage and lavender all seem to understand that they’re there to support the primary juniper element of the spirit (keeping its ginness intact).  None of the botanicals behind the juniper compete with one another for your attention; instead, they complement each other perfectly, each seeming to know the exact moment for it to make its presence known, and when to make way for one of its partners.   Nothing warms the heart quite like seeing that kind of teamwork among plant extracts – just beautiful!

And equally beautiful is the gin that’s the end result.  Uncle Val’s is a richly aromatic, delicately balanced spirit that’s absolutely delightful no matter how you drink gin, whether as the G in a plain old G&T, as part of another mixed drink (think a negroni, perhaps), in a classic martini or out-of-the-bottle-into-the-glass, you’ll love it.  To me, it’s one of the finest, if not the finest example of what the American craft distilling industry is capable of producing (albeit with a nod to a recipe rooted in the old world).

Guess what?We’ve got plenty of it right here at My Sherry &more!


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