Word on the street is that our friends across the pond are having a little scare concerning one of their favorite beverages, and we have to say when we first heard the rumors we were a little nervous for their future cocktails. Gin is a classic spirit loved here in the US, but even more so in the UK, so we decided to do a little digging to find out why we were seeing headlines regarding a shortage!
Now lets get down to the scientific reasoning so we can clear the air and alleviate some gin lovers’ worries. Due to a fungal disease Scotland’s abundant supply of juniper berries, the key ingredient in gin, is slowly deteriorating. A recent study featured in Plantlife states that the spread of “phytophthora austrocedrae” – the fungal disease we were referring to earlier – is severely effecting the liveliness of juniper plants. The plants are now in a “critical state” and without juniper, there is no gin! However, citizen scientists are monitoring the species in Scotland and are beginning to work with the farmers to make the plants and berries more resistant to future threats.
Now for the good news, this outbreak is restricted to Argentina and the UK, and there are other countries in the region where gin distilleries can find their juniper berries. The sipping of G&Ts will go on! So now that you know there’s no need to panic, mix yourself a classic G&T with this recipe and maybe pour a few drops out for the juniper berries we’ve lost.
Perfect Gin & Tonic
4 to 5 tonic water Ice Cubes
3 ounces gin
4 ounces tonic water
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
Lime wedge for garnish
Directions: Place the ice cubes in a tall, narrow, chilled glass (the cubes should come near the top.) Add the gin, then the tonic water, then the lime juice, stirring well. Garnish with lime wedge, and serve immediately. Recipe found on Food Network.