Tanqueray No. Ten holds the top spot out of all gin varieties for its melange of aromas and secondary flavors. In addition to the juniper berries common to all gins, white grapefruit, grains of paradise, cardamom pods, chamomile and coriander layer the flavor of No. Ten. Although No. Ten is the best representative of gin as a whole, best gins are found in each variety.
Martin Miller's Westbourne Strength Gin, rated the number one gin for cocktails by GQ.com on April 22, 2015, is a favorite of gin purists for its finesse. All brands of gin labeled "London gin" or "dry gin" can only get their flavor from juniper berries added during distillation. This uniformity of flavor makes London dry the go-to variety for cocktails.
Plymouth Gin, produced by Black Friars Distillery, takes top honors as best Plymouth gin. Plymouth gin has a Protected Geographical Indication from the European Union, meaning only a distillery in Plymouth, England, can produce gin labeled "Plymouth." Plymouth Gin, which has an earthy flavor from the inclusion of root vegetables during production, comes off a bit drier than London dry gin.
Professor Cornelius Ampleforth's Bathtub Gin, awarded the Gold Outstanding distinction for best contemporary-style gin at the 2015 International Wine and Spirit Competition, leads the contemporary category. Contemporary-style gin introduces flavors after distillation through cold compounding, also known as infusion. Bathtub Gin includes cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, orange peel and coriander in its aromatic ensemble.