LePlan-Vermeersch Premium Belgica Gin
History: Gin is an alcoholic drink that is made by the distillation of a fermented grain batter. By adding juniper berries it receives its specific taste. The flavour of ordinary gin is very dry, therefore it is often mixed with tonic; the famous GT (Gin-Tonic) cocktail. Gin is directly related to the older drink Jenever. This is still a common drink in The Netherlands and Belgium.
Flemish Roots: The oldest record of the juniper berry is an entry in the 13th century encyclopaedia “Der Naturen Bloeme” by Jacob van Maerlant from Bruges. Juniper berries were cooked in wine and used as a medicine. The oldest recognized juniper recipe can be found in the 16th century book “Een Constelijck Distileerboec” by Philippus Hermanni from Antwerp. Via the English Gin became ‘World Famous’…
Region: Belgium (Jenever) & France (herbes de Provence).
Distillation: Distillery De Moor in Aalst (Since 1910).
Gin in 4 phases: malting, mashing, fermentation, and finally: distillation.
Malting: A selection of the best sorts of grain are used: barley, rye and occasionally wheat. Malted barley is always used to form a mash. In the Malt house, the barley is soaked, germinated and then dried to malt, which in addition to starch, also contains malt sugar.
Mashing: The finely ground rye and / or wheat flour is mixed in lukewarm water and heated to 60 to 70 ° C. Next the malt is added and the malt sugar helps to break down the starch in the grains into sugar to create a sugary liquid batter called wort.
Fermentation: Once the wort is cooled down to 20 to 25°C the yeast is added. Yeast converts the sugars into alcohol and carbohydrate gas. The fermentation process takes 72 to 96 hours.
Distillation: When the fermentation process is completed, the wort is pumped into the alembic and the alcohol is distilled for the first time. The product is called raw alcohol. The wort forms a boiling mixture of water / alcohol. Alcohol already boils at 78.3 ° C and thus evaporates first. This vapour is passed through a cooling system to make it liquid again. Consequently, the alcohol is separated from the solid components for the first time. The raw alcohol goes back to the alembic and is purified by the second combustion. This time, the top part of the alcohol and the bottom part of the alcohol are separated from the middle part, which is the best alcohol. It is gradually heated using a column still, with or without the addition of herbs. The colourless distillate that flows through the glass bell is now called malt wine, it has got an alcohol percentage of 45 to 75 % depending on the type and has a pronounced grain flavour and a malt character. The malt wine will then mature on oak barrel or in an inox tank, depending on whether a golden yellow colour or a perfectly bright colourless distillate is requested. After the ripening, the alcohol in the malt wine is brought to a level suitable for drinking (alcohol percentage between 35 and 44%) and bottled as a real corn jenever in glass bottles or stone crock bottles.
Ingredients: Juniper berries and Provencal herbs like rosemary, lavender, marjoram, thyme, basil, dragon, satureja, laurel, sage, oregano added with fennel, coriander seed, angelica, cardamom, lemon peel, orange peel, grains of paradise, cubeb pepper, liquorice, Orris root, cinnamon, gentian root.
Analysis: Alcohol: 44%, residual sugar: 0 gr/l, Service Temperature: 6° Celsius
Please combine these ingredients for a GT (Gin-Tonic) cocktail with:
- Neutral: Thomas Henri Tonic Water (200ml) + mint leaves
- Fruity: Fever-Tree Mediterranean Tonic Water (200ml) + blue and/or red berries
- Herbal: Fentimans Tonic Water (125ml) + thyme of rosemary