Add one of these craft British gins to your cocktail cabinet

By James Atkinson, November 29 2018
Add one of these craft British gins to your cocktail cabinet

Premium gin comes from all corners of the world, but there's no disputing where its home lies.

Great Britain was the spirit's birthplace and today, its old guard distillers like Beefeater, Gordon's and Tanqueray have no shortage of company.

More than 200 new distilleries have opened across the UK over the last five years, with the craft gin boom spearheading the growth.

As in other markets, distillers are producing the spirit in a wide variety of styles. EU regulations state that to qualify as a gin, the 'predominant flavour' of the spirit must be juniper.

But many of the new products make some kind of regional statement by introducing increasingly exotic, foraged botanicals to their recipes.

Others are differentiating themselves by strict adherence to classicism, dusting off recipes for London Dry Gin as it was originally distilled in the 1700s.

So if you're looking to stock up your home bar with some exotic international gins, here are some British options worth considering.

The Botanist Islay Dry Gin (Rinns of Islay, Scotland)

The "first and only" Islay Dry Gin, The Botanist was created by The Bruichladdich Distillery, more commonly associated with Islay's most famous export: peated whisky.

The gin contains 22 botanicals hand-foraged on Islay, alongside nine other botanicals more typically found in gin. The distillers have kept the more novel ingredients in check to arrive at a gin that is still fairly classic in flavour and mixes easily with tonic of a variety of styles.

The Surrey Copper Distillery Copperfield London Dry Gin (Cranleigh, England)

The debut release from this 2018 start-up, Copperfield is based on a recipe penned by distilling pioneer Ambrose Cooper in 1757. it employs just ten classic botanicals, in keeping with the gins of the day.

Juniper-rich, lightly floral with woody spice, Copperfield London Dry Gin is round and smooth with good complexity and length. Its distinctive book-shaped bottle pays homage to book covers from the late nineteenth century.

Bullard's Norwich Dry Gin (Norwich, England)

Produced by the first distillery to open in Norwich in 150 years, this gin won the coveted prize for Best London Dry Gin at the 2017 World Drinks Awards.

It uses tonka beans and "nine secret botanicals" to produce a clean, crisp, balanced gin.

Hendrick's Orbium Gin, Girvan Scotland

This experimental and limited edition gin from Scotland's Hendricks brings some of the classic flavours of gin cocktails into the spirit itself.

Tonic's key ingredient of quinine is infused alongside wormwood, which is usually found in vermouth – a common ingredient in a traditional gin martini. The result is a more challenging, complex expression of Hendrick's that the distiller happily declares is "not for everyone".

Cotswolds Dry Gin (Shipston-on-Stour, England)

Lavender from the Cotswolds village of Snowshill and Egyptian bay leaves are the novel ingredients in this London Dry-style Gin, which is built on the foundation of juniper berries, coriander seed and angelica root.

The distillers also add the zest of several hundred limes and grapefruits, peeled every week by hand, with cardamom seed and black peppercorn giving a hint of spice.

Eden Mill Golf Gin (St Andrews, Scotland)

Dressed in a green jacket reminiscent of the Masters Champions, Eden Mill’s Golf Gin is a homage to its birthplace of St Andrews, considered the home of golf.

The gin uses botanicals sourced from golf courses including seaweed from St. Andrews Links and gorse flower from Braids in Edinburgh, contributing some maritime and sweeter notes.

James Atkinson

James is a journalist whose career took a turn for the better when he began specialising in what he enjoys most: Travel, food and drink. Whether at home in Sydney or on the road, he's especially diligent at roadtesting bars and restaurants and hunting down some special bottles to bring home.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer P1

23 Aug 2014

Total posts 127

Thanks James - the perfect article to send to potential gift givers at Xmas!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

14 Oct 2016

Total posts 66

If anyone is in Edinburgh, I’d suggest heading to The Gin Company on North Bridge for an amazing retail selection of craft gins from across Scotland.

Could you do look to do article on Australian craft gins? there are so many, just in South a Australia standouts include (imo) The green ant gin from AHD, Ounce gin, and the range from Ambleside Distillers.

Singapore Airlines - The PPS Club

14 Nov 2013

Total posts 40

If you ever come across a bottle of 1897 Quinine Gin buy one, one of the best gins ive ever tasted.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

25 Nov 2016

Total posts 67

Gin coming back in drinking favour, old favourites never die, they just get reinvented

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