• Shelley Boettcher

Award-winning gin showcased in cocktail

The team at Central City Brewers in Vancouver has recently won a couple of big awards — double gold at the 2017 San Diego Spirits Competition — for their Queensborough Gin.

"Judges unanimously picked Queensborough Gin as the only Double Gold medal award winner in the gin category in a blind taste test," according to a news release.

And it's made in Canada.

While Central City Brewers started off as a craft brewery — and still makes plenty of awesome beer — they branched into distilling in 2013. Led by distiller Stuart McKinnon (below, right) they've been winning awards ever since. This small-batch dry gin follows a London Gin style, but with a fresh Canuck spin: mountain juniper berries grown in BC's interior, plus spruce tips from Vancouver Island.

Vancouver mixologist Christos Kalaitzis (above, left) has created a cocktail in honour of the award. You don't need a cocktail to enjoy this gin, however. A good-quality tonic water is enough to make it shine, or enjoy it in a gin martini. About $40 a bottle.

Queensborough Gin "Double Gold"

1.5 oz Queensborough Gin

0.5 oz Vermouth

1 oz maple syrup

3 dashes aromatic bitters

Three leaves of mint

Shake ingredients and double strain into a balloon glass. Top with ginger ale. Garnish with cinnamon stick and mint spring. Serves one.

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