The Bottom Line
- Sweet gin based on a traditional genever recipe.
- A taste of the "original gin."
- Great for use in a variety of classic cocktails, including those that originally called for genever.
- If London Dry is too dry, try this genever.
- Not as aromatic as drier gins.
- Dutch genever from Lucas Bols' original 1820 recipe
- Triple distilled using 50% malt wine and neutral grain spirits, infused with natural flavors
- Imported from Holland
- 42% alc/volume (84 proof)
- Retails for around $38/750ml bottle
- Bols was on the US market until Prohibition and was not available again until the summer of 2008
Guide Review - Bols Genever
Bols Genever shines in cocktails and this is where we should focus. It has a lush profile that is sweet, but not too sweet, and when that aspect is paired with gin's required juniper the result is fascinating. It is with a genever like Bols that we should rediscover this spirit and the classic cocktails in which it originally appeared. Drinks like the Fancy Gin Cocktail, Gin Fix and Gin Daisy used genevers like this exclusively and other classics like the Pegu Club, Clover Club and Sweet City are transformed into spectacular potations with Bols. My discovery of genever through Bols has even inspired me to create the Countdown Cocktail, as it has many other mixologists with some fascinating new cocktails.
Rich grains fill the distinct nose with sweet cherry and malt tones. Bols' palate is rich and smooth with malt and juniper vying for domination, although both are just below the silky surface. The finish has tangy grass notes and is quite poignant as it leaves a sweetness behind.