Oxley Classic English Dry Gin
With its pungent, peppery-juniper-herbal bouquet and its smooth, elegant flavor, Oxley Classic English Dry Gin (www.oxleygin.com, $50) stands out among the world’s best gins. Its aroma is the product of 14 different botanicals, including English Meadowsweet and peels of fresh lemon, grapefruit, and orange. The gin is macerated in a neutral grain spirit for more than 15 hours, then gently spooned into the still. The secret of Oxley’s intense taste is a four- to five-hour sub-zero cold-distillation process that preserves the crisp characteristics of the botanicals by not boiling them away. Only 240 individually numbered bottles, each embossed with the words "small batch gin," are produced per day. Indeed, this is a very small batch gin. Adding vermouth would be a sin.