"Words don’t match the pride and the glory that this place of Rajasthan holds." -Anonymous
Rajasthan is the India I imagine in my daydreams. It conjures images of maharajas and maharanis bedecked in gold and jewels in a landscape of desert and wonder. Jaisalmer is “The Golden City” in this fabled land. A place of such elegance and prestige only deserves to have the only the finest of liquors carry it’s name. Jaisalmer Indian Craft Gin fulfills this promise.
Jaisalmer gin sources coriander and vetiver grass from Rajasthan to incorporate the region's terroir into the liquor. Each sip of Jaisalmer invites one to consider the unbelievable diversity of Indian flavors.
This gin straddles classic and contemporary gins. It carries enough juniper to bring provide familiarity, but with the range of Indian botanicals added, the gin's flavor is something new. The orange, tea, and coriander come through in delicate hints to liven this gin up. The aroma also blends the recognizable with the mysterious as juniper plays with caraway seeds.
Jaisalmer should be used in numerous ways. I would recommend substituting it into gin recipes that call for both classic and contemporary gins.
THIRST AND HUNGER
Twist on a Classic: Rhesus Monkey Gland
I wanted a twist on a classic that would bring this this pheneomenal gin to the forefront. Also, I leaned into the wildlife of the region, that has a large population of Rhesus monkeys. The gin worked really well with the orange juice and grenadine infused with cloves, cinnamon, fenugreek and black cardamom.
For the drink:
-2 oz Jaisalmer gin
-1 oz cara cara orange juice
-1 teaspoon Indian spiced grenadine
-2 dashes absinthe (Wigle Absent Minded)
Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker with ice and shake for 10 seconds. Pour into your glass through a Hawthorne and fine mesh strainer. Garnish.
Something Original: Jewels of Jaisalmer
Jaisalmer is known as "The Golden City." I wanted to feature this color in my original drink. To complement the gin, I made an Indian spiced simple syrup with sweet tamarind, ginger, fenugreek, and turmeric. For the garnish, I featured the regal black buck of the region.
For the drink
-2 oz Jaisalmer gin
-3/4 oz fresh lemon juice
-1/2 oz elderflower liqueur (St Germain)
-1/2 oz Indian spiced simple syrup
-1 oz Cava
Add water to you glass and freeze for several hours. Add all of the ingredients except the cava to a cocktail shaker. Add ice and shake for 10 seconds. Pour through a Hawthorne and fine mesh strainer into your glass. Top with the Cava. Garnish.
Eat Your Spirit: Jaisalmer Mango Lassi
Choosing an Indian food to feature Jaisalmer gin was difficult with a seemingly endless range of possibilities. I settled on a mango lassi to really let the gin star in the recipe.
For the lassi:
-6 oz Jaisalmer gin
-3 cups chopped mangos
-2 cups Indian whole milk yogurt
-1/2 cup cold water
-1/2 cup ice
-3 tablespoons honey
-2 teaspoons lime juice
-1 teaspoon cinnamon
-1/2 teaspoon turmeric
-1/8 teaspoon salt
-1/16 teaspoon cayenne
-Add all the ingredients to a blender except the gin.
-Blend for one minute.
-Serve into four glasses.
-Add 1 1/2 oz gin to each glass and stir to combine.
This post, like others about regions I have not been to, means this section of the post is a little different. While I have not been to India, this is an assortment of places I would like to visit and bars and restaurants of interest.
Things to do:
-Visit Jaisalmer, the namesake of the gin, also known as "The Golden City."
-The town of Mandawa seems like a hidden gem.
-Bikaner is a small town on the edge of Rajasthan.
Visit the Chandra Mahal, a palace in the capital Jaipur.
-Gems big part of the Rajasthan economy and many shops deal them.
-Shop a collection of items from various designers across Jaipur at Teatro Dhora.
-The Thar Desert covers a huge expanse of Rajasthan, so visit the Pushkar Camel Fair.
Places to stay:
-For an ultra swanky experience, the Raas Hotels are a luxurious stay.
-You can stay in a former palace built in 1729 by a former royal family of Rajasthan.
-If you haven't had enough royal places to stay try Samode.
Food and Drink:
-I want to have coffee at Caffe Palladio.
-For signature cocktails, the Polo Bar at the Taj Rambagh Palace looks interesting.
-Have lunch at the The Kitchen at the Jaipur Modern.
-The Verandah is a recommended eatery.