Maker: Two James, Detroit, Michigan, USA
Style: London dry gin.
Michigan State Minimum: $34
Appearance: Clear with abundant necklacing.
Nose: Lemon zest, green cardamom, coriander seed, aniseed, wormwood.
On the palate: Full bodied and dry. Cinnamon, anise, horehound, tumeric.
Finish: Dry. Like sucking on a licorice throat lozenge. Fades slowly.
Mixed: Adequate with tonic, but a little too sharp. Excellent in a dry martini with a relatively sweet vermouth. Very good in an old cocktail I found called a Princeton (1 part Port [Fronseca Bin 27 in this case], 2 parts gin, orange bitters and a twist of lemon peel). Old Cockney’s sharp dryness perfectly cuts through the sweetness of the Port. It does the same in a perfect martini.
Parting words: Old Cockney is a pretty aggressive gin compared to most that are in the London Dry style, or at least aiming in that direction. The mainstream gin it most reminds me of is Tanqueray with its trademark sharp edge, but Old Cockney goes beyond that. It teeters on the edge of being too sharp for me. That puts it in the realm of cocktail gins (as opposed to neat sipping or G & T gins) but it’s price pretty much puts it there anyway. Not that it’s unreasonably priced, it’s quite fair. At any rate, sweet cocktails are the way to go with this one. Try the Princeton or something similar, you won’t be disappointed. Old Cockney is recommended.