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It may surprise you to know that the biggest drinkers of gin in Europe are not the English. No, it is the Spanish who hold that esteemed title, and globally Spain ranks among the big players in gin consumption year after year. The legendary Larios produces the biggest-selling gin in Spain, Larios Dry Gin, dominating an ultra-competitive market characterised by a consumer base that knows its juniper-led spirits. But the story of this brand is much older than the ‘second-wave’ gin craze the world is experiencing at this moment. This particular 200-year-old tale begins with Charles Lamothe, a French wine entrepreneur, and Fernando Jiménez, his Spanish associate, whose partnership led to the establishment of the creatively named Jiménez-Lamothe company. The brandy and wine it produced in its distilleries in Malaga and Manzanares didn’t go unnoticed for long, and gained a very respectable reputation. This success caught the attention of the Larios family, who had moved to Malaga at the beginning of the 19th century. They became involved in distillation in 1863, having originally been involved in cane processing. The quality of the spirits made by Jimenez & Lamothe was recognised by The Larios family, who subsequently acquired the company in 1916. The name was changed to Larios & Cía, and the Andalusian distillers launched what would come to be known as Larios Dry Gin in 1932. While it was the third marquis of Larios, José Aurelio Larios, who led this innovation, it was not until the glory days of the 1980s that Larios Dry Gin attained its current renown. Larios Dry Gin remains the biggest selling gin in continental Europe and is one of the top 10 best-selling gins internationally. Go to any bar or shop at any supermarket that stocks alcohol in Spain and you’re certain to find Larios. You’ll also find some below. If you haven’t had tried it, now you can, amigos!

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