Tanqueray is one of the most well known gin brands on the market and is definitely one you can expect to find on every supermarket shelf and their Tanqueray 10 is our personal favourite from the range. In this post we introduce you to a gin you may be less familiar with from Japan, Ki No Bi, which you must try if you have ever enjoyed Tanqueray 10.
A background on Tanqueray 10 to begin with
The Tanqueray brand dates back to the 1830’s and the Tanqueray 10 was the first gin to be distilled with the whole fruits rather than just the peels. They were so desperate to get the recipe right, it took them 2 years and over 250 attempts before they were happy with the results.
The reason it is called Tanqueray 10 is not because it has 10 botanicals (it has 8) but because it was crafted in Tanqueray’s experimental pot still called ‘Tiny Ten’.
Something you may not also know is the bottle is designed in the shape of a cocktail shaker as it is a gin perfectly suited for some of the classics, and the ridges in the bottle represent grapefruit segments which are the key botanical flavour in the gin.
This is a citrus forward gin and sits within the most citrus profile of our gin menu here at The Leafy Elephant. It is zingy and fresh and Tanqueray pride themselves on the drink being consistent wherever you are in the world. They only use 5 suppliers for the fruits and even inject them to test for the fruits’ sugar content before using them.
What is Ki No Bi?
Ki No Bi, fair to say, is a lot less prominent in the gin industry than Tanqueray, with a much shorter history having only come to market in 2016. However, their gin is one that deserves to be at the same table. Translated it means ‘The Beauty of the Seasons’ and it is the first gin to be distilled in Kyoto, Japan.
Unusually, this gin is made from a rice base spirit as opposed to wheat. This gives the gin a creamier and smooth finish and they use authentic Japanese botanicals to create a citrus flavour of more traditional gins. These include yellow yuzu, Japanese green sansho, bamboo and gyokuro tea.
Their uniqueness is that the gin is split into 6 flavour groups and each of them are made and distilled individually. Only at the end do the distillers bring each flavour together and blend them in the perfect quantities to deliver the end product.
How are they similar?
Both of these gins are citrus forward. You will instantly get a classic zesty juniper profile on the nose and they have a clean and dry tasting note. You get citrus up front, more grapefruit from Tanqueray 10 and lemon from Ki No Bi. Towards the finish you will get a few spicy notes. From Tanqueray this comes from the juniper berries and in Ki No Bi it comes from the Japanese peppercorns.
Both make for excellent G&T’s and also stand up great in a Gimlet cocktail.
Why not come and try both for yourself?
Here at The Leafy Elephant we offer ‘create your own’ gin tasting experiences. Pick 3 gins to try from our range of over 200 and we will perfectly pair them and guide you through each gin over the course of an hour with one of our expert mixologists. Perfect for small groups and special occasions, find out more about this and our other gin experiences here.