A little while I finished my bottle of Dutch Courage. Dutch Courage is the dry gin created by Zuidam Distillers, here in The Netherlands. They aptly named it that since genever (which is technically the same as gin) is the origin of the proverb, from ages ago.
Anyway, I also have a small ‘free’ booze project at home. This is a thing with which I trick myself into believing I’m richer than I actually am. I don’t want coins in my wallet, so anytime I have them in my pocket I put them in an empty whisky tin (Signatory Laphroaig 1992-2005) and that way I clean out my pants, and I save a bit of money that I don’t otherwise use.
This money is usually spent on gin, vodka, rum or other non-whisky booze. Last year I bought Zuidam’s Dutch Courage. I emptied it and I bought a new one yesteday, also ‘for free’.
I had the added excuse that Anneke suddenly likes Gin Tonic, and all such statements are abused to buy booze I don’t really ‘need’.
The regular Dutch Courage has been out for a while and is a delicious gin. A bit of a clunky bottle like all Zuidam’s Genevers and Korenwijns. The flavours are there, there luckily is no aloe vera or something in there. It’s crisp, lemony and slightly dry.
When it was gone I had half a bottle of tonic left a couple of weeks ago and I remembered having a bottle of Gordon’s Dry Gin in my cupboard, hidden from sight. I tried that. It’s god-awful. If that has been the posterchild for gin for decades, I can understand the decline of it before the last couple of years. Even with a lot of tonic to water it down, it’s hideous.
I needed another bottle of gin. Our local shop has some (not too many, I guess ten to fifteen different ones) and I decided to upturn the whisky tin. There was some 35 bucks in there, so that was enough, I decided.
It only limited my selection by two. Master of Malt’s Bathtub gin was 40, and there was another cool looking bottle slightly over that which I automatically discarded as an option. Also, there was Gordon’s, some Mediterranean gin and a couple of others. Only the couple of others remained as an option. Gin has to come from a country that borders the north sea, or the USA (a nice and snobby remark if there ever was one).
Then I remembered that Zuidam released two new Dutch Courage gins a while ago. There’s an ‘Old Tom’ and an Aged gin at 44%. The Old Tom is aged too, so I’m not entirely sure what the difference is. The Old Tom was recommended, so I picked up that one.
It’s a bit sweeter than the regular Dutch Courage, with some vanilla flavors from the oak. Slightly sugary which makes for a sweeter G&T, but nonetheless bloody nice. The depth is similar and because of the cask aging I can’t really say (yet) whether or not any of the other recipe is different.
But in short, buy Zuidam’s gins. They’re good.
The regular Dutch Courage is some € 20. The Old Tom is slightly more expensive at € 27.50, while the ‘Aged 88’ (the aged one) is € 28.50.
They’re all available in Krommenie, at Drinks & Gifts, and I guess most specialty shops stock them in The Netherlands.