With India the fifth-largest market for gin in the world, creators Anand Virmani and Vaibhav Singh of Nao Spirits set out to make a version both tasty and affordable. “There are the cheap mass-produced, cold-compounded ones that taste like vodka with flavoring,” says Virmani; the existing London dry gins are imported and thus expensive. Two months ago, Greater Than was born.
The coriander seeds, chamomile, fennel, lemongrass and ginger are all indigenous.
Virmani and Singh spent the past two years experimenting with ingredients, distilling them and creating different combinations. To fine-tune the recipe, they turned to Anne Brock, Gin Guild board member and the new master distiller at Bombay Sapphire. The final product contains a variety of botanicals and spices, both local and imported. The coriander seeds, chamomile, fennel, lemongrass and ginger are indigenous. The juniper is from Macedonia, the angelica root from Germany, the orris root from Italy and the orange peel from Spain.
Greater Than is only available in India (Rs 750 to Rs 1,450 rupees, depending on different state taxes), but there are plans to sell it in the U.K. by March 2018, where it will be introduced as India’s first craft gin. We shall drink to that.
RECIPE: NO SLEEP G&T
- Pour 45 milliliters Greater Than into a tall glass of ice.
- Add 90 milliliters tonic water and stir.
- Using the back of a spoon, float 15 milliliters cold-brew coffee on top.
- Garnish with a grapefruit wedge.
— Jay Dhawan, assistant distiller