One of my motivations for writing this blog was being blown away by one gin back in the summer of 2015, and that gin was Monkey 47. I was going to write a Monkey 47 review as an opening piece for the blog, but as I began to drink a wider range of gin I was increasingly flabbergasted by the array of amazing gins out there, and so I decided to put it on the backburner until I was a little more ‘widely read’ as it were.
I have been recommending this gin ever since that first taste, so I was pretty relieved to find, upon buying a new bottle recently, that it was indeed as fine as my memory had instructed me it was; this is still the gin to beat. It is very much in the London Dry Gin style, but it is also very quirky. The 50cl bottle, like an old fashioned medicine bottle with a cork stopper; the 47 botanicals and the 47% ABV; the fact that it is made in Germany, of all places – hardly a recognised centre of gin production. There is a hint of the spicy nature in the postage-stamp style label: a depiction of a monkey that could be straight from the wall of some remote Indian village – and the cardamom is certainly present in the aftertaste of this incredibly smooth gin.
It is not cheap – £36 at least for a bottle that is only two-thirds the size of a usual bottle of gin, making it about a third more expensive than any gin I have so far reviewed.
One of my gin bibles recommends that you simply sip it and add no tonic whatsoever, but I think that does a dis-service to the humble G&T and I would recommend at least four large ice cubes and a splash or two of Fever-Tree Indian Tonic Water – but only a splash or two, do not drown it or you’ll be missing out on one of the best gins that I am yet to taste. No garnish required, just enjoy the complexity of the botanicals. If you are in any way a gin fan then you have probably already tried this, but if you haven’t, then please do, because it is, simply, fantastic, and I can quite honestly say that in no small way, Monkey 47 changed my life.
Monkey 47 Schwarzwald Dry Gin – £36 for 50cl
Gin & Tonic Rating 5/5
Buy Monkey 47 at The Gin Box Shop