Close this search box.

Related Content

Chrismast 2023 gin cocktails

Festive Cheers: The Ultimate Guide to Christmas Gin Cocktails

Empress Gin: A Royal Choice for Gin Lovers

Eco-Friendly Gin Production

Sipping Sustainably: The Gin Industry’s Commitment to the Environment

Mad Hatter Gin and Tea Party

From the Distillery to the Teapot: The Perfect Marriage of Gin and Tea

Top-Shelf Gin: 10 Unique Brands to Try

Gin lovers rejoice! From popular to craft, award-winning to best priced, there are a plethora of top-shelf gin brands to choose from. But which ones truly stand out in terms of quality and taste? We’ve scoured the market and selected 10 top-shelf gin brands that deserve a spot on your bar cart. Whether you prefer unique flavors or smooth sipping gin, these brands have earned their place on the top shelf. And the best part? Many of these can be found at your local liquor store or purchased online. Get ready to elevate your gin game with our top picks.

Monkey 47:
Crafted using 47 different botanicals mainly grown in Germany鈥檚 Black Forest, Monkey 47 is no ordinary gin. Accompanied by a unique back story, the brand is inspired by an Indian born British WWII pilot that helped rebuild the Berlin Zoo and in the process helped a monkey named Max. The mixtures of the botanicals are perfectly balanced between citrus, pine, tart, pepper, and herbal notes for a beautiful aroma and smooth finish that one might even call a work of art.


The Botanist:
With its Scottish heritage front and center, the Botanist takes pride in distilling a spirit that is routed and grounded in its land. The 22 botanicals infused gin has managed to create a spirit that is universally loved and enjoyed all while being environmentally forward. Utilizing sustainable growth and waste avoiding practices, the brand provides a slow-distilled spirit that uncovers layers of flavor and complexity with each sip.


Highclere Castle Gin:
The castle on the bottle might look familiar as it is the set for the British show Downton Abbey. Highclere Castle Gin is produced in England鈥檚 oldest gin distillery and is inspired by the castle鈥檚 gardens and local ingredients grown on the estate. The award-winning spirit merges tastes of herbal and citrus with oats and sweetness that result in a uniquely smooth finish.


Ki No Bi:
Translating to 鈥淭he Beauty of the Season鈥, the brand is first to hail from Japan, using a variety of botanicals and ingredients regionally grown. The rice-based spirit is layered with flavors of citrus, flowers, and local herbs that perfectly combine for a unique floral gin with hints of earthiness.


The Italian gin is a bit of a minimalist compared to others who have made the list, using only five botanicals in addition to juniper in its distillation process. All blended together with the purest source of Italy鈥檚 mineral water extracted from the spring of the Monviso Mountain, the brand is a juniper forward, crisp masterpiece.


Playmouth gin is the one and only brand that makes plymouth style gin. It is distilled in the same location and under the same process since 1793. A classic gin, Plymouth uses Dartmoor water and seven botanicals that create a peppery, floral flavor spirit that is as unique as its creators.


KOVAL Barreled Gin:
In comparison to most gins, KOVAL Barreled gin is extremely unique in its production process. Starting out with Koval鈥檚 dry gin, the spirit is transferred into whiskey barrels where the flavors are mixed into liquid gold of sweetness from the wood and whiskey remnants, resulting in a uniquely different gin taste of butterscotch.


Nolet鈥檚 Gin Dry Reserve:
Next on the list is a limited edition gin from the makers of Nolet鈥檚, inspired by Carolus Nolet, Sr., a 10th generation distillery owner. The bottles are so scarce they are given out annually and are individually numbered by hand. Made using both traditional and exotic botanicals, the spirit results in a mixture of sweet and herbal notes.


Watenshi Gin Bottling Note:
Last but not least, comes the gin at the highest of shelves. Though the brand鈥檚 price can be steep, the distillation process is as unique as it gets. The gin is made using the angel鈥檚 share of the Cambridge Distillery gin, which would normally be evaporated. This results in only 15 milliliters of spirit during production, making it the smallest of small batch distillation with only six bottles made in the process. To top it off, the spirit is poured into a hand-blown glass bottle, finished with silver.


Contact the Gin Observer