Bols Genever is based upon a recipe which Lucas Bols introduced in 1820. The spirit is produced from malt wine distillate which is made from long-fermented rye, corn, and wheat which is triple-distilled in copper pot stills. This malt wine, is then infused with a carefully selected distillate of botanicals and brought to 42% alcohol by volume. The manner in which this spirit is produced pre-dates the advent of the Coffey still, and as such it represents a very early style of gin.
It occurred to me that Bols Genever may be the ideal spirit for me to explore early gin cocktails from the nineteenth century. To that end, I have reconstructed an early Gin Crusta recipe from that era which is found in the Bartending Manual written by Leo Engels, (American and Other Drinks) and published in 1878.
The formulation provided by Engels is rather hard to follow because it bases its construction upon another early recipe, the Fancy Cocktail, which in turn bases its construction upon a more generic serving which Engels simply calls the Gin Cocktail. Weaving my way through the tangle of recipes, I have brought forward Leo Engels’ Gin Crusta from 1878. (The cocktail was a favourite of my tasting group at a recent tasting I held where we were comparing both different styles of gin and different gin cocktails.)
1878 Gin Crusta
2 oz Gin (Bols Genever made with recipe from 1820)
1/4 oz Lemon Juice
1/8 oz of Orange Curacao
1/8 oz Sugar Syrup
1 or 2 drops of Angostura Bitters
1 or 2 drops Fees Cocktail Bitters
1/3 cup cracked ice
Lemon Spiral (paring from half a lemon)
Lump of Ice
Rim a wine glass with a lemon slice
Dip the glass in powdered sugar
Pare 1/2 a lemon and place the paring inside the wine glass
Place the ingredients in a tumbler and strain into the wine glass
Add a small lump of ice
If you are interested in more cocktail recipes, please click this link (Cocktails and Recipes) for more of my mixed drink recipes!
Note: My review for Bols Genever will publish tomorrow.