One of the things that makes gin such a unique spirit is its versatility in the distillation room, brought on by open-ended criteria that simply require there to be juniper present in both makeup and flavor. This has engendered literally countless new labels to crop up over the past 30 years, known as the gin renaissance, with 100 new distilleries opening in the U.S. alone during the 1990s. The spirit’s ambiguous standards mean there’s always room for not only experimentation but improvement.
Growing up in the Bay Area with Korean roots, Young Jung recently launched Bok Gin in San Francisco to tap into her epicurean roots. Her mother was a restauranteur who mastered cultural staples such as kimchee but was also unafraid of testing out new flavors and ingredients within that space. Jung realized that gin held the perfect template for exploring and fusing together the minutiae of different cultures’ gastronomies through our taste buds.
Along with juniper, she’s infused her new spirit with 10 other botanicals and spices, including black pepper, white pepper, perilla, roasted sesame seed, cucumber, ginger, dried kelp, lime peel, coriander seeds, and mugwort. Perilla leaves, native to Korea, bring earthy and nutty tones to the profile, while mugwort provides a dash of bitterness and ginger gives the liquor a special kick.
The beautiful thing about gin is the range of complexities it can add to either sipping or mixing. With the variety of flavor profiles, each individual product can provide a completely different purpose and experience than its contemporaries. Bok Gin is said to go great with dirty martinis and bloody Marys. Stay tuned to the company’s website for news on upcoming availability.
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