If only the New York Knicks scored as well as their namesake, Knickerbocker Gin … there would be a few more championship seasons in New Amsterdam.
New Holland Brewing Company was the brain-child of two college buddies—Jason Spaulding and Brett Vander Kamp. They launched their little enterprise back in 1996, at the leading edge of the craft brewing and distilling movement. Based in Holland, Michigan, they have grown formidably, but have remained staunchly independent. Today they brew a wide range of beers and, in 2005, began distilling spirits, ranging from Whiskeys, Rums, an Orange Liqueur, and Gins.
What’s a “knickerbocker” anyway? Well, it’s pants … as in, “don’t get your knickers in a bunch!” It’s also as in “The New York Knicks,” and we all know that New York was once called “New Amsterdam” right? Amsterdam in is Holland … New Holland brewing … get it? Knickerbocker Gin is, at its heart, a London Dry style Gin, and a very nice one at that.
The list of botanicals is just as it should be, twelve in all; juniper, coriander, angelica root, orange and lemon zest, cinnamon, ginger, orris, cardamon, fennel, clove, and nutmeg. That fennel is a pleasant surprise and accounts for the spice. It will certainly be a winner in your next cocktail with that spicy fennel acting as counterpoint to the freshness of the tonic and fruitiness of the Negroni.
“Knickerbocker” was the nickname given to Dutch immigrants landing in New York because of the traditional baggy pants worn by the men.