Box The Explorer 48.3%


Nose: Singed juniper wood and juniper berries. Lemon. Vanilla and coffee, and spices; chai? More of everything with water, but also chalk and mineral notes.

Palate: A lot. Let’s see: Immediately a little burnt rubber and liquorice, then herbs and after a while oak planks and one the finish coffee. The chalk makes and appearance on the palate as well with water.

Comments: I’ve poured a The Challenger in another glass to compare the two, and I still find Challenger closed on the nose. Explorer has more of a full in-your-face-nose. But they are both good. Very good, in fact. In six months the fourth and last bottling of The Early Days Collection will be released. I will be ready and waiting on the date of release, and once I’ve got it I will, of course, have a quadrupel paralell tasting. I’m already looking forward to it.

Myken Arctic Dry Gin 47.3%

Myken is soon ready to launch their first product. Well, if you happen to swing by the pub  Emaus at Lovund this evening you can have a dram already. Not coincidentally, Roar Larsen is also at Lovund, preparing to appear on Norwegian national television in the programme Sommeråpent in just a few minutes.

And guess what I found in the mail today?

myken_ginNose: Nice and clean gin nose. Juniper berries, juniper wood, slight cumin, pine needles and coriander. A bit of cucumber too, I’ll have to get the Hendricks out to compare. A drop of water emphasises the coriander, making it more soapy.

Palate: Quite light, a little citrus, but more of an orange peel than a lemony citrus. Quite soapy corainder, some juniper berries and juniper…twig? I’ve never actually chewed on a juniper twig (perhaps I should try it?), but I imagine it tastes like this.

Comments: I can see no reason why this shouldn’t soon be appearing in every bar in Norway. I like it, and it’s got to be more fun presenting a Norwegian gin than a run-of-the-mill foreign one to your customers? Not least if you frequently have tourists stopping by? I’m certainly aquiring a bottle as soon as it becomes available at the Vinmonopol some time this autumn.

After a quick nip to the cupboard for a Hendricks (one of my favourites, I should mention) I can say that, yes, there are definite similarities, especially on the nose. The spice is a bit more apparent on the Myken, but they both have that cucumbery feel to me. And they both have that soapy coriander on the palate, though the Hendricks leans more towards lemondand lilacs. Adnams First Rate (another one I really like) has a completely different profile, with a more extreme spicyness.

PS: Whiskysaga have written about Mykens gin today, where you can see pictures of the lable design and find more details on the botanicals.