The Tasting: The Fifty Best held a “blind” tasting of 62 gins with eighteen members of The Fifty Best's spirits judging panel. Traditional, London Dry and Navy Strength Gins were tasted and judged separately from the Old Tom and Barrel Finished Gins. Strict tasting rules were applied. The order of service was established beforehand by lottery. Each of the gins were poured into fresh glasses from new sealed bottles, and served at slightly above room temperature. Only ice water, neutral unflavored crackers and chips were available to cleanse the palate. The judges tasted through eight flights of 7 gins and one flight of 5 gins. There was a food break after the fifth flight.
The judges wrote down their impressions of each product on score sheets. The scoring was done on a 5-point system, with 5 as the best. Double-Gold, Gold and Silver medals are awarded according to a set range of final point scores received from the judges. There were no bronze medals awarded for this tasting. The tasting notes that follow are summaries of the judges’ opinions, with all replicated commentary eliminated. The states and countries of origin are identified for each brand.