Lucas Bols 100% Malt Spirit Genever Launch

Product Development
About This Project

100 % Malt Spirit Genever by Lucas Bols

Lucas Bols

Working with Lucas Bols could be the dream of every bartender. It is a worldwide operating company, located in Amsterdam with a small team of only forty people. With a small group, you concur the world. As Master Bartender you are responsible for the global drinking strategy, you manage the  Bols Bartending Academy and you are also closely involved in product development. All products at Lucas Bols are developed together with the master bartender to make every product perfect for cocktails. This was especially the case with the 100% malt spirit Genever. The dream genever of master distiller Piet van Leijenhorst. Genever as genever was drunk in the 17th century.


Why 100 % Malt Spirit?

Malt Spirit is the core of every good genever. The past years the percentage of malt spirit in genevers has dropped drastically and Lucas Bols is one of the few genever brands that still uses a high percentage of malt spirit. In its original 1820 genever the malt percentage is up to 60%. This was the recipe as developed in 1820 by Lucas Bols and used in many of the first cocktails ever made. One of four drinks in Jerry Thomas’ first cocktail book is made with genever. To really showcase what classic genever is, Lucas Bols decided to go back to the original 100% malt spirit as made in the 17th century.

What is Malt Spirit

Malt spirit is a distillate of five days fermented corn, rye and wheat and a touch of barley. The grains have been malted to produce the great enzymes that turn starch into sugar. The long fermentation produces the fatty acids and esters that give the malt spirit the unique grain, honey and fruity flavours that are so characteristic for Bols Genever. This is the core of the Bols 100% Malt Spirit. We redistill juniper berries over a small part of the malt spirit. This is added to the core. We bottle the spirit straight from the still after third distillation at 47% abv.


Bols Genever 100%5a0ad64fcf640

Spot on

It rarely happens that the first try of a new product is spot on. Often we change small things and sometimes we have to go back to the drawing board completely. The moment I got the 100% malt spirit from the first try, it was spot on. The only small discussion we had was about the abv. The first try we bottled at 40% abv. Originally malt spirit can only be called malt spirit if it is at 47% abv. Since we want to launch the classic malt spirit genever, we decided to go back to 47%. By upping the abv of the malt spirit, the true character shines through.

Drinks with the 100% Malt Spirit

The fruitiness and the honey notes of the spirit combined with the distinctive grain notes, make it ideal for mixing. Something we didn’t expect when we first started this project. The first drink I tried was spot on. It was so simple yet complex that it is now the signature drink for the 100 % Malt Spirit Genever. It is easy to make and full of flavour; the Dutch Connection. Two parts Genever and one part Bols Dry Orange. Stirred and strained over ice. Garnished with an orange zest. The slight bitterness of the curaçao oranges in the dry orange make an ideal flavour combination with the fruitiness and the grains and honey.

The second key drink is a reversed Vesper Martini. Two parts Genever, one part vodka and a dash of Lillet Blanc. I will put a small list of drinks at the bottom of this post. For more information, please visit the Lucas Bols website.


Dutch Connection

40 ml Bols Genever 100% Malt Genever
20 ml Bols Dry Orange
Glas: Old Fashioned
Method: Stir in Glass
Garnish: Orange Zest


40 ml Bols Genever 100% Malt Genever
15 ml Bols Pineapple Chipotle
15 ml Pekoe Supreme Ceylon Liqueur

Glas: Old Fashioned
Method: Stir in Glas
Garnish: Rosemary Twig

Reversed Vesper Martini

30 ml Bols Genever 100% Malt Genever
20 ml Bols Vodka
10ml LilletBlanc

Glas: Martini
Method: Shake and Fine Strain 
Garnish: Lemon Zest

The 100% Last Word

20 ml Bols Genever 100% Malt Genever
15 ml Bols Maraschino
15 ml Lime Juice
20 ml Chartreuse Vert

Glas: Coupe
Method: Shake and Fine Strain
Garnish: None

Arrow Alley

35 ml Bols Genever 100% Malt Genever
25 ml Pear Juice
20 ml Sherry Medium Dry
15 ml Lime Juice
5 ml Sugar Syrup
4 Cardamom Pods

Glas: Coupe
Method: Shake and Fine Strain
Garnish: none