It’s been three years since Gin Mare, a self-styled Mediterranean gin, made landfall in the U.S. First launched in 2010, this Spanish gin claims to be the “first ever [gin] inspired by the Mediterranean.” No exact definition for “Mediterranean gin” exists, but Gin Mare includes Spanish olives, Greek rosemary, Turkish thyme, and Italian sweet basil alongside the less region-specific botanicals of coriander, cardamom, citrus, and juniper.
There’s lemon, thyme, and fatty olive on the nose. It starts clean and sharp with notes of citrus and has a silky presence on the palate. That fatty olive note pops up at the center, where it’s joined by thyme and rosemary. After the herbal notes emerge, the gin starts to develop a more bitter character in contrast to its bright, citrus-forward start. It dries out as the finish approaches, taking on anise and—for the first time—juniper. Its medium-length finish is dry, bitter, and lightly spiced.
If you’re looking for a truly different gin experience, Gin Mare won’t disappoint. It’s a world away from the buttoned-down London Dry and botanical-happy New World gins that dominate much of the market, and the relatively minor role juniper plays in the experience should make it palatable to normally gin-adverse drinkers as well.
In a Gin and Tonic made with Fever Tree’s Mediterranean tonic, its thyme and rosemary flavors present most strongly. Unlike more juniper-forward gins, Gin Mare doesn’t “punch” through the tonic. It’s soft rather than sharp, as laid-back as an afternoon spent on some sun-dappled Mediterranean coast.
— 42.7% ABV