Gin! Turns out I like it. Turns out that once they've had it as real adult drinkers, everyone I know likes it! This is both good and bad. More delicious drinks... but man we go through it quickly. I wanted to provide a quick look at the gins I've had since getting into it, before I totally forget!
1) Hendrick's Gin
Country of Origin: Scotland
Thoughts: It got me drinking gin, it's that damn good. Low on the juniper, and high on cucumbers. Doesn't make very good Aviations because it doesn't taste "ginny" enough. In fact, I wouldn't bother using it in most cocktails... it's not typically what the cocktail wants and it's pricey. Served chilled with a slice of cucumber, or in a martini though? Oh yes.
2) New Amsterdam
Country of Origin: US
Thoughts: I don't remember much about this bottle. I drank it all making various classic cocktails though, and they tasted pretty good. :) They claim it's "smooth" and "crisp", for what that's worth.
Country of Origin: France
Thoughts: I really enjoyed this bottle. Very citrusy, not overpoweringly ginny. We drank basically the whole bottle straight, with only a touch of vermouth or olive juice to make it seem like a proper drink. Definitely a tasty sipping gin.
Thoughts: I haven't gotten a bottle of this, but it makes for amazing Aviations. According to wikipedia, Plymouth counts as a style of gin all by its lonesome and it's been kicking around since the stone ages. As soon as I find a bottle, I'll be getting one.
Thoughts: My first real "london dry" bottle. It's... very dry. The flavor is too much for me to really enjoy sipping it, but it makes excellent cocktails. We ran it through the paces with some classic cocktails, and killed the bottle in under 24 hours. Certainly not my favorite style straight, but for most classic cocktails: this is what they want.