Gin of the week: Boodles

It’s more humid than Singapore on Old Street right now. Genuinely. A rocking 78% mugginess rating and an excellent reason, not that we needed one, for a refreshing drink designed to fight such sweltering climates, fortify the body and enliven the mind. So we present this week’s gin – modelled by our visiting canine companion, Gnarly – for your pleasure: Boodles London Dry Gin.

After the recent tasting disaster of Nordés, we were on the look out for a strong contender we could rely on to win over the office. What better, then, than a gin first concocted over a century and a half ago and recently enjoying a UK renaissance? It’s been said Boodles was the favourite gin of Winston Churchill (it’s named after a London gentleman’s club which counted him among its members), so if you like your drinks to carry the seal of approval of great wartime leaders, then look no further. Ian Fleming is supposed to have been a big fan too, which raises the question: why did this winning recipe disappear off our shelves for so long? Boodles only re-emerged in the UK market in 2013, despite being produced here and having been readily available in the USA and Japan for ages. We’ll have to forgive and forget. Boodles is back at long last, and we salute its glorious return.

No need for exotic tonics with this one – a standard bottle of anything will do – and, as always, we went in without garnish. In a word, it’s great. A real old-school, no frills gin with plenty of juniper and everything else balanced masterfully. There’s no citrus in there, allowing plenty of room for a bit of lemon or lime if you fancy it. Even the gin-sceptics among us had to acknowledge Boodles’s charm. It’s a traditional thing done right. With our gin collection becoming dominated by quirky and experimental new brands that often turn out to be novelty failures, it’s reassuring to find a gin that just gets the job done with elegant simplicity.

A 9/10 for Boodles. Pop over for one when you can.