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Monkey 47 Schwarzwald Dry Gin

A German Dry

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A complex mix of 47 botanicals, the Monkey 47 Dry Gin from Germany has a robust quality, with strong herbal aromas and crisp, fresh flavors.

TASTING NOTES FROM THE CURATOR

Adopted from a long-lost gin recipe, the Monkey 47 Schwarzwald Dry Gin is a complex mix of 47 botanicals, and has an ABV of 47%. It hails from the Black Forest in Germany, and is batch distilled in copper stills, and aged for three months in earthen clay pots. It has distinct aromas of juniper, with sweet flowery and citrussy notes, and hints of pepper. It’s robust and powerful, with classic London Dry characteristics on the palate—crisp and fresh, with tangy, slightly spicy notes, and a nice freshness. It’s a complex, balanced gin.

PREPARATION AND PAIRINGS

You can enjoy your Monkey 47 Schwarzwald Dry Gin on the rocks, or with tonic, garnished with some grapefruit zest. It’s also great for Negronis and Martinis. Pair with pates and strong cheeses, as well as Asian dishes, like curries or ginger prawns.

MAX AND MONTY

Gin is a tradition most associated with Britain, and a gin from Germany might raise some heads in confusion. It was the 1950s, and Montgomery Collins, a Wing Commander at the British Air Force, moves to the Black Forest in Germany, in an isolated valley. He puts up a guesthouse, the “Wild Monkey,” named for an egret monkey called Max that he was sponsoring at the Berlin Zoo. Here he learns the Black Forest tradition of fruit distillation. With this newfound learning and a longing for his British passions, he develops his own gin, one that becomes the trademark of the “Wild Monkey” well into the 70s.

In 2006, Alexander Stein received a phone call from a friend about a story of a monkey, a Wing Commander, and a recipe for a gin that was once long lost. This recipe was found decades before, in a box in the basement of the “Wild Monkey.” It was found while renovations were taking place, and it contained sketches of Max the Monkey, a bottle of Collins’ gin, and a letter containing all the ingredients he used. It was treasure.

The Black Forest Distillers adopted this recipe and named it “Monkey 47 Schwarzwald Dry Gin.” The name is an homage to Max the Monkey, and 47 pertains both to the number of botanicals used, and the gin’s ABV. This recipe is closely guarded, known only to Alexander Stein and his distiller, Christoph Keller.

Storage Instructions

Store your bottle of gin upright in a cool, dark place, ideally between 13 and 16°C. Higher temperatures will affect its flavor and alter its taste. If you prefer to drink your gin cold all the time, you may keep it in the freezer, as its ABV percentage prevents it from freezing. Unopened bottles can last for an indefinite amount of time, but the closer you get to the bottom third of the bottle, please consume quickly to prevent oxidation and taste alteration.

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