Ok, first off, I’d like to apologize to my fives of readers for the posting hiatus this week. It wasn’t that I didn’t have time to blog, I didn’t have time to do anything to set up the next couple of posts I want to do! Tops on my list of upcoming projects is doing a series on alternate gins for making Pegus. Herewith is my first in this series, please enjoy responsibly.
The first gin I’m going to touch on is the new Tanqueray Rangpur Gin. I used to be all for the infused vodka products, when they first appeared, but now they’ve gone completely overboard. The Three Olives shelf in our liquor store looks like a Crayola truck smashed through the window of a produce market. Tank Rangpur is a bit of a play on all the flavored vodkas out there, but seems to be a more sophisticated project. Some decent Tanqueray gin is further infused with ginger and rangpur
limes. I put the limes in quotes, since they are apparently not limes at all. Slashfood says this about Rangpurs:
Sometimes called rangpur limes, many people assume that rangpur are in fact limes. They have a very strong lime taste to them but they are actually a lemon x mandarin orange hybrid that probably originated in India. They are one of three similar fruits from the family Citrus × limonia Osbeck, commonly but incorrectly called mandarin limes. Other names for rangpur are: rungpur, marmalade lime, lemandari,; Canton lemon in southern China, hime lemon in Japan, Japanche citroen in Indonesia, sylhet lime, surkh nimboo, shabati in India, and limao cravo in Brazil. Rangpurs are orange skinned and are the size, shape, and look like tangerines, but with a very sour, acidic juice that is used like a lime and has a very pronounced lime like flavor and aroma.
So, let’s see what we’ve got here: Decent gin of ancient pedigree, with lime-like flavor, using a fruit from the region surrounding the Indian Ocean. Is it too far a stretch to think that those dottily brilliant Brits of the Pegu Club in darkest Burma might have used Rangpurs in their original invention? And this simply got translated to Limes upon export back to Britain, and our fair shores as well?
I still put off buying a small bottle, mostly out of sheer inertia, until I was spurred to action by a new television commercial from Tanqueray, featuring Tony Sinclair.
Mr. Sinclair certainly shows how far Britain has come, now that even men of african descent have joined the ranks of upperclass twits! Anyway, the latest ad Tony has put together for Tanqueray is about Rangpur. He’s such a charming, if kind of eccentric, gentleman that I finally felt Ready to Tanqueray. Aren’t I just the marketing victim?
Yes, I know he’s not real! Shame on you.
I’ve mixed several Pegus now with Rangpur, varying the amount of lime juice and bitters. I first tried the recipe unchanged from the Sapphire version, but this was simply too… too. I liked the tonality of the drink, but that smooth Pegu Punch that appeals so much to me was not so smooth! Thus I soldiered on, secure in the knowledge that you would thank me for my intrepid efforts! The next batch I simply cut the lime juice in half, but this was a bit pungent for my own taste. I tried one more batch, this time side-by-side with one made with the classic Sapphire recipe, in order to compare and contrast. I used about three-quarters of the lime juice, and went a little easy on the Angustora.
Voila! This gives us a nice, smooth, tasty cocktail. It’s a Pegu, but it tastes much milder and a bit sweeter than the Official Pegu Blog recipe. The Rangpur and ginger add some neat new flavors as well. What I don’t like about it so much is that while it is less punchy that the classic, it does taste a bit more ginny. I’m not a huge fan of getting punched in the nose by juniper, and the Tanqueray reminds you that this is a gin drink a little more than I like. If you do like your drinks more distinctively ginny, this is a very interesting variant that you ought to try!