(Hip Hops will return next Wednesday)

Sara “The Bar Belle” Havens experienced Darling’s, the only gin bar in Bourbon Country, and rekindled her romance with the botanical spirit.

Her column is “The Wonderfully Weird Ways of Gin,” and you can read it in Food & Dining Magazine’s Summer 2022 print edition (Vol. 74; June, July, August) which is out and about right now.

Find copies, free of charge, in the metro’s finest food and drink establishments. The Bar Belle’s column also can be read at issuu, where we’re pointing you today (above).

As an aside…

The digital editor’s wife has family in Plymouth, England, a city in Devon with a near perfect natural harbor that for centuries has been a Royal Navy hub (and once was the starting point for a famous journey to America).

Nine years ago we toured the Black Friars Distillery, since 1793 the home of Plymouth Gin, a venerable spirit bearing testimony to Royal Navy’s enduring influence in a maritime economy. In olden times, once it had been established that gin was just as important as medicine on a boat, someone had to distill and provision all those ships filled with sailors in need of (shall we say) treatment.

Or in the case of British colonists in India, something to make the quinine go down.

Plymouth Gin is a multinational appendage nowadays, but the tour was informative, and the use of botanicals in flavoring gin remains fascinating overall. If you ever find yourself in Plymouth, make the distillery a stop—then adjourn to a pub for a pint of cask-conditioned Best Bitter.