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Fake gin flavoring for non-alch gin & tonics?


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24 replies to this topic

#1 of 25 OFFLINE   Dennis Nicholls

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Posted July 13 2007 - 03:29 PM

When it's as hot as it's been lately, nothing is better to drink than a gin & tonic. The bitter and the sour quenches better than the typical sweet syrup drinks.

The problem is simple....if you drink too many gin & tonics, you won't be able to stand up after a while. Posted Image

Has anyone found a suitable flavor extract which I could use to substitute for gin? This way I could drink them all afternoon and not get plastered. I've seen extracts of juniper berries in a very small (and expensive) bottle, but apparently that's just the start for the botanicals added to neutral spirits to make gin.

EDIT For example, I've seen concotions such as those listed on this page. http://webtrolley.or....gory_Code=1200
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#2 of 25 OFFLINE   Kevin T

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Posted July 13 2007 - 05:15 PM

maybe if you drank rain water that drained off a dead hooker's ass, you'd get close the flavor of gin without the alcohol (but adding hepatitis) kevin t ps....this is a thread fart and i approve this message
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#3 of 25 OFFLINE   JeremyErwin

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Posted July 13 2007 - 05:57 PM

I did find this description of what gin is


source.

Bear in mind that alcohol is an organic solvent, and extracts different flavors than does water.

#4 of 25 OFFLINE   Joseph DeMartino

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Posted July 15 2007 - 12:25 PM

Well, you could buy a cheap gin, or a slightly better brand on sale, and then warm it on the stove, remove it from the heat, then apply a flame to burn off the alcohol. Allow the result to cool and you can use it in place of real gin. Posted Image

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#5 of 25 OFFLINE   PhillJones

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Posted July 16 2007 - 12:42 PM

Right so, where you wrote 'the alcohol' there, I just wanted to check. You didn't mean 'your eyebrows' did you?

#6 of 25 OFFLINE   Joseph DeMartino

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Posted July 16 2007 - 12:49 PM


No, that's why I mentioned taking it off the heat first. Maybe I should have also specified the kind giant lighter used for starting gas grills or a really long fireplace match. Posted Image

Regards,

Joe

#7 of 25 OFFLINE   Dennis Nicholls

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Posted July 16 2007 - 03:23 PM

Well I did give your suggestion a try. I put 1/3 cup of Gordon's into a half quart saucepan and warmed it on my gas barbeque. When it was hot, I lit it off with the propane wand lighter. Odd how it burns evenly from the surface. I had to agitate the saucepan to get the alcohol to burn off in a reasonable period of time. I took it back into the kitchen and used an ice bath to cool the resulting liquid. About 40% was missing which makes sense starting from 80 proof. It didn't taste right. The resulting liquid had very little flavor at all, more like water with a faint hint of gin flavoring.
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#8 of 25 OFFLINE   PhillJones

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Posted July 17 2007 - 01:01 AM

It's not really that surprising. When you warm the alcohol up, it's already evaporating. The alcohol that you set light to has already left the gin so burning it off is not neccersary. When you light it what you're doing is getting the surface a lot hotter and evaporating off a whole bunch of other liquids as well as evaporating the alcohol off faster. Did the surface boil? I'm not sure if you could remove the alcohol without altering the flavour but I imagine you'd have to use a fractional distilator or heat it up to about 80 degrees and leave it at that for several hours. Even then I doubt it'd taste the same.

#9 of 25 OFFLINE   Dennis Nicholls

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Posted July 31 2007 - 03:38 PM

Well I finally found a local supplier of juniper berries - Cost Plus. About $1 for several ounces. I ground some up in my mortar and pestle and threw them in with lime juice and tonic water. Verdict: not quite the same. And the ground up juniper berries float and leave an unpleasant layer of ground berries on the surface. It's hard to drink past them. I suppose I could use a straw but that's just wrong.
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#10 of 25 OFFLINE   betooz

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Posted July 31 2007 - 03:44 PM

Ugh, as said Hawkeye, a proper Martini is made with Gin. Personlly I prefer Vodka.

#11 of 25 OFFLINE   Kirk Gunn

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Posted August 01 2007 - 12:03 AM

Wow - fresh ground junipers... I admire your persistence ! I believe Gin is one of this elixirs that you just can't duplicate w.out alchohol.... kind of like dark rum or Mr Jack Daniels. But, keep it up, I'd love to hear if you find anything.

#12 of 25 OFFLINE   Joseph DeMartino

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Posted August 01 2007 - 07:06 AM

The point of lighting the fumes is simply to give you a visual indicator to let you know when all the alcohol has, in fact, cooked off. Otherwise it is very hard to tell when you're done. Now that I think about it, it isn't surprising that this method (which was purely theoretical) didn't work. The major flavor ingredients in the botanicals that go into gin are alcohol-soluable, so they would have been dissolved in the alcohol and burned off along with it, leaving basically water behind. A variety of booze flavored mostly with water-soluable ingredients (like wine) would have responded better to this method, although there are other problems associated with heating wine. Regards, Joe

#13 of 25 OFFLINE   JeremyErwin

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Posted August 01 2007 - 09:10 AM

I have no idea what an essential oil is-- seems a bit shady to me--- but juniper berry oil is available from "aromatherapy" type sources. Most claim that that the esters are distilled with steam.
this article also mentions tea.

#14 of 25 OFFLINE   Michelle Schmid

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Posted August 01 2007 - 10:28 AM

Try taking your liquid concoction & straining it through a couple of layers of cheesecloth. I don't know what the flavor will be like (without the berries, the cheesecloth adds none), but it's got to be better than ground floaties.

#15 of 25 OFFLINE   Dennis Nicholls

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Posted August 01 2007 - 10:57 AM

Yeah I've thought about making a strong tea out of the juniper berries - I could contain them in one of those tea infuser balls. At least there's always another use for juniper berries - making the marinade for sauerbraten! Posted Image

www.thespicehouse.com/recipes/sauerbraten-recipe

Now I have to remember to buy gingersnaps......
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#16 of 25 OFFLINE   PhillJones

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Posted August 02 2007 - 04:48 AM

That's not right. If that was the case purifying water by distilling it wouldn't work. As for the juniper berries. I've never even seen a juniper berry. Can you juice them? What about boiling them for a long time and using the stock, if that's the right word. Alternatively, why not try a Lime Rickey? It's made with A Lime quartered and muddled with brown sugar, then Angustura bitters and tonic water. There are several variations. The common one you see is using lime syrup but that's nowhere near as good.

#17 of 25 OFFLINE   JeremyErwin

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Posted August 02 2007 - 11:12 AM

Distilling Essential Oils


Not sure that you could use the result to flavor water, though.

#18 of 25 OFFLINE   JeremyErwin

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Posted August 02 2007 - 11:18 AM


How Brandy is Made

#19 of 25 OFFLINE   Dennis Nicholls

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Posted August 02 2007 - 12:12 PM


What? You've never seen Life of Brian? Posted Image
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#20 of 25 OFFLINE   Matt Stryker

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Posted August 03 2007 - 06:22 AM

This site sells gin "essences" - might be what you're looking for:

http://www.brewhaus....sences_s/35.htm

The price is right and they don't appear to contain alcohol.