Review: Skeptic GinQuila Reposado
What’s ginquila? It’s gin finished in tequila barrels. Yes, that’s a crazy idea. Or is it?
With GinQuila, Chicago’s Skeptic Distillery was inspired by a cocktail called the Cantarito, a Paloma style cocktail served in a clay pot. “Fusing this concept with the vibrant flavors of South America, we infused a gin base with fresh tropical fruit and spices including papaya, grapefruit, orange, lime, cinnamon, thyme, and chipotle and arbol peppers.” It’s then finished in tequila barrels (presumably reposado barrels) for a few months.
So: Is this as weird as it sounds? Let’s give it a try.
GinQuila’s nose is heavy with the hallmarks of gin: juniper, rosemary, earthy notes, and a squeeze of citrus. Only mildly spicy, it really hints at tequila only in the abstract on the nose…. And then the palate shifts gears entirely. Notes of lemon, butterscotch, and creamy vanilla all emerge quickly, giving the palate a distinct sense of oaky reposado tequila. Those more classic herbal gin notes eventually swing back into focus as the tequila notes fade, before the gin jumps to an unusual finish that is complex with dark cocoa and licorice elements. Drying and spicy, and quite racy at times, it’s a fun alternative to the now-standard whiskey barrel-finished gin experience — and a massive surprise on the whole that’s worth experimenting with.
A- / $30 / skepticdistillery.com
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