A gin spice bomb with interesting interplay between the wood from barrel aging and their usual citrus forward gin profile veering it more towards a spicy melange.
Notes: Honeoye Falls Distillery is one of the newer distilleries in the Rochester and Finger Lakes area, having just celebrated their one year anniversary on August 13th of 2016. Located about 30 minutes south of Rochester it is nestled in the hill and drumlins of the Finger Lakes area and draws its water from the nearby Finger Lakes of Canadice and Hemlock Lakes ( both of whom are water supplies also for the city of Rochester and known for the taste and purity of their water. They use a second generation ( as I call it , as significant improvements have been made over the first models) Artisan Still Works stainless steel steam fired still with a column and copper inserts. This is their small batch citrus forward new world type gin made from almost what could be called hyper local grain ( some is grown right next door to the distillery building . The mashbilll is rye based and the gin was aged for a minimum of 3 months in 5 gallon second fill American oak barrels. This is a very small pilot batch of gin that was aged, blended, and bottled in a small quantity so if you want some you better grab it now as the stocks are quite limited and people are hunting it to extinction – or at least until they can age some more.
HFD has also branched out considerably in a short time to produce a stable of other products .Their first product is a vodka called Frozen Falls Vodka, Frozen Falls is currently being phased out as they are concentrating their vodka resources on the Zamir Vodka made for and under the supervision of Zamir Gotta and Comrades. There is an unaged version of this gin called Devils Bathtub Gin, an unaged rye spirit called Lantern Light Rye Moonshine and an aged version of the rye by the name of Red Saw Rye, and an extremely limited release Red Saw Bourbon. More information on those and the variations of each on can be found in their reviews. Honeoye Falls has also released both a green and a much rarer red absinthe, and working on other projects that have not seen the light of day yet……
Appearance: Clear light amber color, On swirling it leaves a light edge line on the glass then forms a series of tears on the edgeline with a few legs forming.
First Impression: Very spicy nose, sort of a citrus and potpourri ( but in a nicer way than most potpourri , most of which makes me gag).With cinnamon, angelica, mace, cardamom, lemon, orange, juniper orris root) , bit of a spice bomb.
Taste: Mulled cider and or egg nog spice profile, very much a fall sort of style, with the cinnamon wood, and leather notes wrapped around a herbal citrus core.
Drinks: Mulled cider and egg nog of course, or make a Swedish Night ( one shot of That Old Devils Gin with cream over ice in a rocks glass)Makes an interesting Bloody Mary type of drink if you use melon juice or even Aloe juice. Fun with coconut juice also ( still trying to develop a name for that one – maybe Devils Plasma or Gatorade)
Bottle: A rather short necked sort of apothecary bottle, a bit shorter than many you see and you need a large hand to grip this beast.Sort of a patent medicine or turn of the century look to the label and graphics. Composite cork with a wooden top makes for easy opening and good seal. Significant punt in the glass bottle means it might be useful for a shaped charge after it is empty if the revolution comes.
Other: Higher proof than a number of gins these days. Have it with a mild cigar, maybe a Connecticut Shade wrapper as this gin already has a lot of flavor.
Final Thoughts: Price is excellent for a hand crafted barrel aged gin, but this beast is in need of more cocktail development for it to find its way in the world. A nicely unique spirit looking for a purpose, Summon it in you conjuring circle and see what happens…
A well laid out and fast loading site with easy navigation and a fair amount of information. It needs updating in a few places but is a well done site overall if a bit minimal compared to some.