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(By Eve Bushman) Thanks to a nephew that pays attention, and shares my love of spirits, I was recently gifted a new gin to try. My nephew told me that the Four Pillars Navy Strength Gin was his favorite of the many he has tasted. I love gins and have tried many alone in spirit tastings and in cocktails.

I have learned that not all gins lend themselves well in a martini with vermouth, bitters and lemon twist. I have tweaked my recipes, talked to bartenders, and now use one kind of gin in a stand alone Martini (Nolet’s) and one with less botanicals (Beefeater) in my Martini that does also allow for the vermouth, bitters and lemon twist.

At the end of this column is some information from the Four Pillars website. However I at least wanted to mention the 58.8 numbers that appear as part of the name on the front label, boldly placed between the words Pillar and gin. Then also on the label is that the gin is batch distilled, limited edition, 58.8% Alcohol by volume. The 58.8 number is about 10% higher than other gins. So, if you do try this gin you may need less than you normally would drink.

Why I Choose Gin Over Vodka

A couple of years ago we went through some changes in our home life, and suffice it to say, I developed stomach aches off and on. My doctor said it wasn’t an ulcer and gave me a daily antacid to take. At the same time I had taken a class on bitters. I already knew that the botanicals in gin were considered “restorative” and the bitters were equally so. (I’m not going to give you a lesson here in gin and bitters, but honestly, why have a flavorless colorless spirit – vodka – that you add things to give it flavor when you can have gin?)

Of course there are many people, even my husband, that don’t care for the botanicals in gin. To each his own. What is curious to me is that as soon as I make a gin Martini, or have one made for me, within a few sips my tummy relaxes. Who knows for sure if it’s the gin or just the idea of turning off the mind and sipping a martini at the end of the day - signaling my body that it’s time to rest? Whatever it is – it works for me. Hope this inspires some readers to drink out-of-the-box and try something new.

Recipe To Try

There were a few cocktail recipes online, but not as many for Navy Strength gin over regular gin. There was a Gimlet that looked good, and maybe one other, both asked for ingredients I didn’t have on hand when I had the urge to try my new gin. This is the recipe I found, and after I made it, it’s a keeper:

Read more here: Eve’s Wine 101: Eve Discovers: Four Pillars Navy Strength Gin