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Spirit of the Month: Gin Mare

Try the Mediterranean spirit at Level 2, Hundred Proof, Il Dandy and more San Diego spots


Gin Mare gin and tonic with an olive/rosemary garnish

It wasn’t too long ago that gin meant Bombay, Tanqueray, or Gordon’s—all of them London dry gins with their distinct juniper flavor. Then came Hendrick’s (cucumber), American gins like Aviation (more floral, less juniper), and a resurgence of Old Tom (sweeter, softer).

Expect to be hearing more about another style: Mediterranean. There’s only one gin in this category, Gin Mare (pronounced Muh-ray), but it so perfectly occupies the category, it’s doubtful anyone would try to match it. The Barcelona-based spirit is savory and herbal, distilled with Arbequina olives, rosemary, basil, and thyme. Gavin Koehn, Gin Mare’s California brand manager, describes it as “the Mediterranean in liquid form.”

Koehn says Gin Mare is best served simply.

“A gin and tonic in a wine glass with one part Gin Mare to four parts quality tonic with a sprig of rosemary is my favorite,” he says. (He recommends 1724 Tonic or Fever Tree Mediterranean.) “Also try a Gin Mare dry martini stirred with a pinch of salt.”


Where to try it:

spirit of the month Gin Mare dirty martiniThe house Gin Mare dirty martini at George's/Level2 | Photo by Brogan Jessup

House Dirty Martini @ George’s at the Cove / Level2 (Gin Mare, house celery brine, lactic acid)

Negroni Dal Mare @ Il Dandy (Gin Mare, Volume Primo vermouth, Galliano, olive)

Silver Hawk Martini @ Fort Oak (Gin Mare, botanicals, Herbs de Provence olives)

Mediterranean Sea @ Little Italy Food Hall (Gin Mare, 1724 Tonic, thyme, rosemary, orange zest)

Spanish Style Gin & Tonic @ Hundred Proof (Gin Mare, housemade tonic, lemon oil, rosemary)


Where to buy it:

Raised by Wolves bottle shop @ UTC Mall

Old Town Liquor @2304 San Diego Avenue, Old Town

Quality Liquor Store @ 2329 Madison Avenue, University Heights


What to do with it:

Use it in a Bloody Mary.

This mango, black pepper and Gin Mare spritz is on my list to try.


Try it in a White Negroni:

1 oz Gin Mare
1 oz Lustau blanco vermouth
1oz Cocchi Americano
Combine in a rocks glass with ice. Stir until chilled. Garnish with lemon zest.


You can also find dozens of recipes on the Gin Mare website.  


Gin Mare didn't show up on many menus until Negroni Week. George’s at the Cove’s new menu martini is made with Gin Mare or vodka—get the Gin Mare version.

Gin Mare was originally launched in 2010 in Europe and first became available in the US in 2016 after becoming the third bestselling super premium gin globally.

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