Sunday, October 08, 2006

Tanqueray Rangpur

I first started drinking gin about six years ago while at Purdue. My friend Brent introduced me to it and we quickly went through an assortment of brands before finally settling on our top three. These were Bombay Sapphire, Tanqueray and Citadel, all of them excellent gins. Over the years I eventually came to drinking just Bombay Sapphire while occasionally dabbling in other brands such as Tower of London.

But earlier this month it came to my knowledge that Tanqueray was releasing a new variant of their world-famous gin and only in Washington, DC with select areas in Maryland and Delaware. It was a sign from God if I'd ever seen one. So last week on my way home from work, I stopped by the liquor store across the street from my metro stop in the District and picked up a bottle. It was only $22 for a 750ml, comparable to my regular Bombay Sapphire, and as for the taste, well read on.

Gin truly is an acquired taste. Many of my friends have compared it to mouth wash, pine needles or jet fuel, all of them apt descriptions if you're not a fan of the stuff. And even for us connoisseurs, drinking it with tonic is seen as the best way to casually enjoy it. But Tanqueray Rangpur is different. Following the advice of a local blogger, I poured it straight over ice. The taste was much lighter than what I expected. I'd never had a Rangpur lime before but I imagine their complimentary flavors to gin was discovered early on. The whiff of botanicals was there but not nearly as strong as expected. Tastewise it was very smooth yet retained the characteristics of its worldly heritage.

Already my life has been subtly altered by the discovery of this new gin. While hanging out at a bar in Clarendon the other night I caught myself asking for a Tanqueray Rangpur straight up, momentarily forgetting that it was available only in DC until February of next year when it goes into general release. I, for one, will be counting down the days.


Christopher said...

I had no idea this stuff even existed. I was just reading the wiki on tanqueray and found a link to your review of the rangpur. I thoroughly enjoy fine gin brands, and I'm looking forward to making it across the river to pick up some rangpur. I actually live in the Courthouse neighborhood of Arlington, close to Clarendon. Thanks for your review of this promising spirit. Cheers!

Brian said...

Thanks for the review. As a Tanqueray lover, I'm really bummed that it won't be available on the west coast until next year.

bbenthin said...

Update, a friend in MD just sent me a bottle (big one). Your review was spot on. I poured it straight over ice, fantastic (and I'm not a habitual straight gin drinker. I now have a new favorite! Thanks for the heads up.

Anonymous said...

I've got my bottle at home and am eagerly awaiting an evening to try it. I'm still bitterly disappointed they discontinued Malacca - I may have to try eBay. While it wasn't necessarily as crisp and dry as some like, the depth of flavors and really complex botanicals made it my favorite sipping gin.

I agree with the Sapphire: that's definitely the best (and almost always available) day-to-day gin to drink.

Look at all the traffic you've gotten from your wikipedia link!

The British Bird. said...

Icame by your blog, and being British I am a great lover of gin, but the good kind, Bombay being a firm fav. there are some mouth-watering cocktails, such as 1.5 ml of gin, a tad suggestion of bitters, and ginger ale to taste.

Try it with a splash of cranberry.. yum.

Kyle said...

I purchased my first bottle today. I am a confirmed Tanquery and Tanquery 10 drinker, so I was anxious to try the Rangpur. My wife also enjoys Tanquery. Neither of us enjoyed it on the rocks, but after adding a small amount of Tonic (which I would not ordinarily do) we both really liked it. It has a real lime flavor but a pleasing one. Enjoy!

Phil said...

Nice review you wrote, but in some points I disagree. Jet fuel?
Apart from the remarkable lime aroma, I can definitely not taste jet fuel.

Sean said...

I never claimed Rangpur tasted like jet fuel, only that some varieties of gin do especially when drunk straight.