Our next feature drink contains a gin that most Americans have never experienced, genever gin. The version of genever we are using is Bols which is now on the U.S. market. Made from a distillation of 60% malt wine with herbs such as anise, angelica, and coriander, Bols genever is malty with a hint of pear and other fruits not unlike Irish poteen (Irish potato moonshine). Using a secret recipe from 1820, Bols genever is only made in the Netherlands and its secret distillate ingredient is fiercely hush-hush.
Now, if you’ve had gin and like it, genever is nothing like it. It is much more like a rich brown spirit such as whiskey than a hotter, sharper conventional gin. Because of that, it makes a much better pouring spirit than sipping one. Aaron and I set to work tasting a few genever cocktails based on old recipes and came up with the Bloody Skeleton. No, the drink isn’t blood red or anything; I just happened to spill some Peychaud’s on a skeleton cocktail napkin while making the drink on a Scary Movie Night, thus the name stuck. So if you are in the mood to try a new spirit, give Bols genever a whirl.
2 ounces of Bols genever gin
1 ounce of green Chartreuse
1/2 ounce freshly-squeezed lemon juice
Dash Paychaud's bitters
Add all ingredients into a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a cocktail glass. Hit it with a dash of Peychaud’s bitters, accenting the anise in the spirit. Garnish with a lemon peel or fresh sprig of rosemary if you like.