Hernö Gin Cocktail Awards 2013 and The Spirits Business Gin Masters 2013

Now that the storm Sven is creating chaos here in Sweden, I want to focus on the storm that the small Swedish gin distillery Hernö Brenneri has created in the global spirits community during its short existence. Not only have they created some of the world's best gins - Swedish Excellence and Navy Strength - they also released Juniper Cask - the first ever gin aged in juniper wood.


As if that was not enough, Hernö Gin beat 48 other brands and was awarded Gin Grand Master 2013 at the prestigious The Spirits Masters Awards two days ago - congratulations! One Silver, two Gold and 2 Master Awards is really impressive!

Also, on November 25 the first Hernö Gin Cocktail Awards took place at Corner Club here in Stockholm. Bartenders from all around Sweden had submitted 2 cocktail recipes each - one Gin & Tonic twist using Hernö Swedish Excellence, and one freestyle cocktail using Hernö Navy Strength. The nine bartenders with the best recipes were chosen to present their cocktails in front of the jury Jon Hillgren (Hernö Gin master distiller), Madeleine Rapp (Nytorget 6) and Emil Åreng (Rex Bar & Grill).

The winner Oskar Johansson
All cocktails and performances were top notch, but the judges had to announce one winner - and in the end it was Oskar Johansson (Corner Club) who won the competition, including 10 000 SEK and the opportunity to make a signature gin at Hernö Brenneri - congratulations! Second runner-up was Micke Karlsson (Little Quarter) and third runner-up was Karl-Martin Edin (Rex Bar & Grill).

As a bonus, here are Oskar, Micke and Karl-Martin's recipes for you to try out for yourselves - enjoy!

Jakt & Tonic (Oskar)
30 ml Hernö Swedish Excellence
10 ml Simple syrup
100 ml Heated tonic water
Juniper brushwood-infused whipped cream

Build in Irish Coffee glass, stir and top with whipped cream.

Ebba Grön (Oskar)
35 ml Hernö Navy Strength
40 ml Lime/apple/pea shoot cordial

Shake with ice, strain into chilled cocktail glass.

Micke Karlsson
Hernö & T.O.N.I.C. (Micke)
50 ml Swedish Excellence
20 ml (T)iotusenkronors tonic*
1 dash (O)range bitters
20 ml (N)oilly Prat
(I)s
(C)itronzest

* Tiotusenkronors tonic:
Cordial made from Fever Tree tonic reduction, sugar and lemon zest.

Stir, strain into Old Fashioned glass on the rocks, garnish with lemon zest.

Hernö Navy Strength Fika (Micke)
40 ml Hernö Navy Strength
200 ml vanilla yoghurt
5 frozen strawberries
40 ml coffee/cinnamon syrup*
1 tablespoon strawberry jam

*Coffee/cinnamon syrup:
1 part brewed coffee
1 part sugar
1 cinnamon stick

Put cinnamon stick and sugar in hot coffee, dissolve sugar, strain cinnamon stick, let cool.

Blend and serve with straw and a cinnamon roll!

Karl-Martin Edin
G, B and T (Karl-Martin)
50 ml Hernö Swedish Excellence
20 ml lemon juice
20 ml egg white
10 ml Verrini Murani balsamico

Dry shake, shake with ice, double strain into Highball glass filled with 100 ml tonic water.

Jomenvisst (Karl-Martin)
40 ml Hernö Navy Strength
10 ml Gammal Norrlands Akvavit
30 ml Arctic raspberry syrup

Shake with ice, strain into chilled cocktail glass.

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