Whisk(e)y and rum aren’t the only spirits you can put into a barrel! Cask-ageing gin was once a normal practice: wooden casks were used to ship it from England to the Americas, Asia and the Mediterranean, like so many other liquids and foodstuffs of the time. While this practice fell out of favour as more modern transportation methods were introduced, some distillers in the modern craft movement are once again embracing maturation and resting their gins in casks.
As it does to whiskies, cask maturation adds certain flavours to a gin (think notes of vanilla, caramel, baking spices and cloves) and can help to smooth the spirit by removing some less desirable flavour compounds. Often, second-hand casks are used, and the type of liquid that was aged in them first – be it Scotch or American whisk(e)y, sherry, brandy, or wine – imparts different flavours to the gin. Cask-aged gins have great versatility, and can make a great substitute in classic whisk(e)y cocktails. Discover some cask-aged gins to try here.