Top 10 barrel-aged gins

9th July, 2014 by Becky Paskin

Despite being far from a new concept, there is plenty of innovation in our list of the top 10 barrel-aged gins.


There aren’t many on the market, but these are our top 10 barrel aged gins

The idea of sticking gin in a barrel dates back to the 18th and early 19th centuries, when oak was used to ship and store the spirit rather than use breakable or more expensive containers.

As the gin sailed overseas or waited in basements for a buyer, it picked up some of the oak’s sweet, spiced qualities, as well as a little colour.

Also known as “yellow gin”, the spirit was even sold in barrels prior to the Single Bottle Act 1861.

Now, with the gin category enjoying a resurgence thanks to a renewed interest in classic cocktails and the boom of craft distilling, producers are turning to the barrel-rested practice as a means of revisiting the past or simply experimenting with their stock.

What started as a craft distilling movement has now attracted a few entries from some of the largest gin brands in the world, sparking a debate on whether barrel-aged gin will remain a niche category, or grow to become a formidable sub-category.

Right now there appears to be around 50 barrel-aged gin brands available in various markets around the world, but these are our top 10. For more on the barrel-aged gin trend, see the July issue of The Spirits Business, out now.

Have we missed any out? Let us know by leaving a comment below.

7 Responses to “Top 10 barrel-aged gins”

  1. BrianW says:

    What about Filliers or the huge amount of American aged? Like Rusty Blade or Breukelin? They have been doing it way longer than most featured here!

  2. I humbly submit that Roundhouse’s Imperial Barrel Aged Gin is amongst the top in this category. The most venerable and independent tasting panel, the BTI of Chicago, agrees and has rated Few and Roundhouse a stunning 94 for their barrel aged gins. The only criticism justly leveled at Imperial is that it ages deeper and longer than others making Imperial a near-whiskey-like experience. That’s why its fans affectionately call it “Ginskey.” However, the aging effect is precisely what this category is all about and Imperial pushes the needle.

  3. Burq57 says:

    River Sands Distillery’ s Kennewick Barrel aged Gin. The best sipping Gin I know of.

  4. BootlegGreg says:

    Watershed barrel aged gin should be on this list it`s at least better than ransom.

  5. aj says:

    Prescribed Spirits Barrel Finished should be on this list as well.

  6. Doc says:

    How about Vermont Spirits Coppers Barrel Gin? Is it a gin, or is it a whisky? Both! I hear they have a 5-year old Limited Reserve about to be released…

  7. The Gin Man says:

    James Bay Distillers out of Seattle have a 12-month barrel-finished gin, Gintrigue, that should be in this list. Barrels are 4-years bourbon, then 7 years cognac, before their London Dry is barrelled. Tasty and complex!

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