Few American Gin warrants its own new sub-category in the wonderful world of Gin.
From the city of Evanston, Illinois, where the Temperance movement originates, comes a craft distillery that put a stop to long-standing dry laws in these parts. Situated in the backside alley of a former chop shop, Paul Hletko and his skilled team are crafting the finest spirits made from Corn, Rye and Barley. The distillery’s single purpose is to bring the best products made from the best grains, perfectly matured and finished under one roof.
Now to give you a brief backstory. In the 19th century a woman named Francis Elizabeth Willard was elected President of the Chicago Christian Temperance Movement. She embarked on a decade-long crusade to prohibit alcohol in the US, and had succeeded. Mr. Hletko worked hard and lobbied against the law, and eventually, made it go away. Ironically, and hilariously, he’s named his craft spirits after Francis (FEW are the initials of her name). Bold move for sure.
It’s hard to start talking about Few American Gin without getting a little wonk-ish. Most Gins start with a base that is best described as strong Vodka—a flavorless, neutral spirit that can be distilled up to six times to remove absolutely all flavor from the base. That base could be almost anything. Grains are the most common, but it could whey, potatoes, even sugar. Then you infuse it with your list of botanicals, which about all the innovation that most Gins care to do. Few Gin does the whole thing differently.
Gin starts with a base grain spirit that has not had the base character cooked out of it. It starts more like a raw grain "white whiskey."
Then they infuse their botanicals, and one of those botanicals is hops
. We are NOT saying that Few Gin tastes like either Whiskey or Beer. We ARE saying that some of the underlying character of the grain and hops is “felt” in the Gin, making it really unique. Up till now we have had three categories of Gin: London Dry Gin, Dutch Genever, and American Gin. Few Gin almost warrants its own new sub-category in the wonderful world of Gin-iness
. Something like Gin-ever-isky
… or maybe not. You’ll just call it good. SmartAss Corner
FEW stands for Francis Elizabeth Willard, a prominent president of the Temperance Movement, whose decade-long crusade crusade to prohibit alcohol kickstarted THE Prohibition.