Forget beer or wine flights. Tried my first gin flight last night at Amsterdam in St. Paul and immensely enjoyed it. I was wise to order a “control” gin I was already familiar with to measure up how the others tasted. So the control was Bombay Sapphire, a gin I thought was reasonably good considering it’s top shelf at bars.
It’s not top shelf tasting. Compared to Bols Genever, Wisconsin’s own Death’s Door gin, and the exquisite, raspberry aromas of Nolet, the Sapphire tasted like gasoline. Also funny: Whoever wrote the gin descriptions (which are wonderfully helpful in the same way Bulldog and other pubs describe beers) for Amsterdam’s gin menu clearly holds disdain for Sapphire. Rather than focusing on what it tastes or smells like, the Sapphire description says “it comes in a pretty bottle.” Sounds like criticism similar to what tequila purists dish out on Patron and it’s masterful (nefarious?) marketing techniques.
There’s 20 or so other gins at the bar I hadn’t heard of before. Each gin on a flight costs $4 no matter if its bar pour is $5 or $10. Where else can you find a bona fide gin list in St. Paul? Scotch go to St. Paul Grill. Beer go to Bulldog LoTo. Vodka? Moscow on the Hill. Now Amsterdam steps up and gives us a nice gin list. I like it.
Anyway it all couldn’t have happened without the wonderful Nancy Ngo inviting me to a music/fashion show that evening at the bar. The space served well for such a production. Cool tunes, costumes and clothes.