Review: Barrow’s Intense Ginger Liqueur

Review: Barrow’s Intense Ginger Liqueur

barrow's intense gingerIt should be noted at the start that “INTENSE” is by far the largest text on the label of this liqueur, but that’s to be expected from any ginger-flavored spirit. It simply comes with the territory.

Ginger liqueurs are a small category, for obvious reasons. The number of cocktails you can use it in is limited, and ginger beer does the trick in most cases. My bottle of Domaine de Canton — the most venerable product in this category — has been half-empty for years.

But Barrow’s, an artisanal product made in Brooklyn, NY, easily gives it a run for its money. This cloudy, intriguing liqueur (Canton is transparent) really does live up to its name. The nose is pungent without being overwhelming, offering legit ginger character plus a smattering of lemon and grapefruit notes. There’s more of the same on the body, which starts off with moderate sweetness — brown sugar melted into ginger ale — then jumps off a cliff into that classic, fresh-grated-ginger bite. The finish is spicy hot yet oddly refreshing, a spirit that’s both rustic and authentic. (The swing top bottle stopper completes the effect.)

Do I still like Canton? Absolutely, but it’s more perfumed, offering jasmine, incense, and vanilla notes up front, with all the ginger in the back. Barrow’s is a bolder and less distracted rendition of the spirit with, yes, a bit more intensity.

44 proof.


Barrow's Intense Ginger Liqueur




Christopher Null is the founder and editor in chief of Drinkhacker. A veteran writer and journalist, he also operates Null Media, a bespoke content creation company.


  1. Chad on February 11, 2014 at 6:06 am

    Funny. I had the same experience with ginger liqueur. I have been waiting for a while now to finish my bottle of Canton, so I can open my bottle of King’s Ginger. But I just don’t use it in enough stuff to actually finish it. I like the idea of the Intensity, though.

  2. VUDean on February 11, 2014 at 3:50 pm

    Could I use this in place of ginger beer? For dark and stormys or govt mules?

  3. Christopher Null on February 11, 2014 at 4:16 pm

    VUDean – not really. You could use some ginger liqueur and club soda or 7-up in a pinch to approximate the same thing, but I think that’d be hard to pull off.

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