So what that everyone and their dog now has a gin shelf or gin wall? We may have jumped on the bandwagon, but we’ve really enjoyed collecting gin, which has only started becoming a thing at the end of last year. I’m not going to pretend to be an expert or tell you how to drink it – this is just a little post about what’s on our gin shelf and where we got each bottle. Maybe it’ll give you some inspiration on what to try next, or maybe you’ll just enjoy looking at the pretty bottles – that’s ok too.
At first we were gifted a few bottles of gins we hadn’t tried by friends at our engagement party back in November. We’d already got a couple of bottles in the house and then started picking up a few more from the supermarkets when they were on special offer or discounted. We tried to be quite picky about what we bought, the main criteria being that the gin had to be ‘top shelf’, a limited edition, something rare or unusual, or we just liked the bottle. The collection began to expand and became slightly more serious when I had a gin shelf (2 shelves really) made for Mr R as part of a birthday present in April. I also got him a subscription to the Craft Gin Club, so that he’d receive ‘one of the world’s finest small-batch gins, including rare and exclusive editions not available elsewhere’ every two months for the next year. We also have plans to upgrade the shelf by adding in some colour changing LED lights underneath for a different and funky effect when it goes dark.
The Gin – all descriptions taken from the corresponding websites…
A contemporary style gin using hand-foraged Orange, Lemon and the Northern favourites Dandelion & Burdock Root. Ours is the ‘overboard’ gin, a more intense version of the signature gin.
What we like – easy drinking, suitably refreshing and very very moreish…hiccup.
Where we got it – The first gin in our Craft Gin box, which also came with a 200ml bottle of their raspberry infused gin.
Inspired by the spectacular Cheltenham racecourse in the heart of the Cotswolds, each bottle of Cheltenham Gin contains a unique blend of botanicals, including fresh zest from Spanish oranges and limes.
What we like – It’s rare. Or at least we were told it was when we bought it. I haven’t seen Cheltenham gin stocked anywhere else to date.
Where we got it – John Barleycorn’s in Broadway. They always have something new and unique in that little shop.
Natural citrus botanicals add a lemon sherbet zest to this classic, apple-based London dry gin.
What we like – actually we don’t. We’ll probably use it as weed killer as it’s unlikely we’ll drink it with all of the lovely gins we now have to choose from.
Where we got it – Waitrose. They teamed up with their mate Heston for this one.
Despite the name, this gin is light and perfumed, with floral notes of angelica, lotus leaves and lavender that give way to delicate spices: white poppy, almond, sweet liquorice and cassia. The finish is smooth and creamy with a hint of lemon.
What we like – it’s a nice gin that can be bought just about anywhere. Very drinkable and inexpensive. Good value for money.
Where we got it – another one from Waitrose (on offer at £18 when last checked 15/05/18). We picked this up when it was on offer whilst doing our weekly shop.
Bringing together a mix of innovative botanicals like cape gooseberries and baobab fruit to its lineup, it also has other more traditional botanicals such as juniper, coriander, lemon & orange peel, angelica root, cassia bark and orris root.
What we like – the bottles and branding is very attractive. We’ve got the small handcrafted dry gin and the quince gin.
Silver Fox Gin is intensely aromatic with savoury notes of cedar, lifted with mellow citrus tones. A deliciously pure tasting dry gin that has a balanced palette, a slightly creamy texture and an incredibly smooth, fine finish.
Why we like it – It is distilled five times, which we’ve not seen before and Mr R liked the name. We sampled it at the show, but are yet to try it properly and with a tonic.
Where we got it – I’ve seen this one around a lot, but ended up finally buying a bottle at The Food and Drink Trade Show in May.
This gin by Chase is produced from the award-winning Chase Vodka and uses 10 botanicals including both juniper buds and berries to ensure the driest gin possible. Zesty citrus, juniper and dark chocolate are upfront on the palate followed by warm spicy notes of cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger.
Why we like it – We like that the Chase Distillery is local to us, as great supporters of anything food and drink in our area. The bottle is very British and iconic and most people will agree that you can’t really go wrong with a Chase gin.
Where we got it – Waitrose on the weekly shop again, although think this one was full price at the time of purchase.
An intensely aromatic and bold gin, with bright and spicy notes of pink peppercorns and juniper, balance with the warmth of honey, tonka and vanilla. Pink Pepper Gin is hand crafted and intricately designed to evolve over time, both in the glass and in the bottle.
Why we like it – there’s a person and story behind each batch of Pink Pepper gin. Our bottle is from batch no XVI – Uran & the E.L.S Allstar. Also half of the bottle is empty, which is probably a good sign too.
Where we got it – Yup – Waitrose (currently £4 off when last checked on 16/05/18).
Gin liqueurs made in Herefordshire using locally sourced fruit and vegetables which are steeped in British gin.
Why we like it – bought a 200ml bottle of the rhubarb liqueur on a whim, and although tasted it at the time of purchase, the bottle remains unopened for now.
Where we got it – RHS Malvern Spring Festival 2018. I bought loads of food and drink back home, despite it essentially being a flower show.
With juniper at its heart, it unashamedly celebrates the integrity and character of a classic London Dry Gin: six perfectly balanced botanicals distilled in traditional copper pot stills.
Why we like it – it’s dry, it’s gin.
Where we got it – Hmmm. The supermarket I think. Either way, it’s on offer at Waitrose at the moment with £7 off (last checked 16/05/18).
The Bluecoat American Dry distilled in a traditional copper pot still and is named after the uniforms worn by the militia in the American Revolution. The botanical recipe is kept secret however the style is a classic dry gin.
Why we like it – it’s the only ‘American style’ gin on the shelf. That’s a good enough reason, right?
Where we got it – an engagement present – it’s almost as if our friends think we like gin or something.
The rhubarb juice is extracted using a traditional fruit press and blended with Warner Edwards Harrington Dry Gin to produce an alluring pink gin that is voluptuous on the palate with a sweet and tangy royal rhubarb explosion.
Why we like it – Mr R isn’t a huge fan of rhubarb, but I like it because it’s pink, it shares my name and I really like the flavour.
Where we got it – Waitrose, where else? It’s currently on offer with £5 off at Waitrose (last checked 16/05/18).
Psychopomp produce craft distilled gins on 30L copper pot stills using a ‘single shot’ method. Woden is their first gin and is available all year. It is a classic London dry gin with juniper berries, coriander seed, angelica root, cassia bark, fresh grapefruit zest and fennel seed.
Why we like it – we were introduced to this gin by Pasta Ripiena in Bristol and it was love at first gin. It’s also pretty cool that they have bespoke gins that they have developed with partners and restaurants. We regrettably neglected to pick up a bottle of Kojin – a collaboration between one of our favourite restaurants Koj. Next time!
Where we got it – at Phschopomp Microdistillery in Bristol. We had to climb a very big hill to get there, but it was worth it! We also bought some glasses, an ice tray and some copper plated straws, because we’d clearly been on the gin.
Salcombe Gin ‘start point’ has the perfect balance of aromas and flavours from the heady, earthy and resinous pine notes of the finest Macedonian juniper, selected for their high Limonene content, to the warming spiced citrus notes from English coriander seeds and fresh citrus peels, hand peeled by us just prior to distillation.
Why we like it – it’s fresh, cool and reminds us of everything we love about being by the seaside. Take me to Devon now!
Where we got it – this is the first of 2 gin’s bought from John Barleycorn’s in Broadway.
Passion and attention to detail in perfect measure, is a recipe for exquisite results. Tanqueray Nº TEN, named after the stills of its origin, is small batch gin crafted using fresh citrus fruits. An exquisite citrus burst in every sip, best enjoyed with premium tonic water and a slice of pink grapefruit.
Why we like it – when you just want a gin without the poncey garnish, special glasses or secret handshake. Also makes a great Martini.
Where we got it – I got this bottle in Tesco long before we’d thought about starting a gin collection.
Gin Mare opens the door to a new variety of gins, with a novel pan-Mediterranean concept that unites the different cultures around this sea representing their botanical stars such as: Arbequina olives, thyme, basil and rosemary.
Why we like it – a Mediterranean gin which has turned out to be one of my favourites. It’s my go to gin when I can’t decide which one I fancy.
Where we got it – I know it’s starting to get boring now, but Waitrose and it’s on offer with £8 off (last checked 16/05/18).
A delectable blend of nine carefully considered botanicals, including lavender sourced from the Cotswolds. The IWSC Gold Award winning gin is clean and balanced with juniper and citrus notes.
Why we like it – we’ve drank this gin pretty much in every bar and restaurant in the Cotswolds. We love the distinctive bottle and its clever branding & marketing positions this gin in a class of it’s own.
Where we got it – I bought this online from Cotswolds Distillery after planning to attend one of their distillery tours and sadly having to cancel due to illness 🙁 Bought one of their spirit measures too whilst I was at it.
The quintessential expression of a classic, traditional London Dry Gin. Bold, complex and aromatic – smooth enough for a Martini, yet rich and balanced, perfect for a G&T.
Why we like it – great price for a great gin.
Where we got it – a super cool engagement present, which came complete with a lemon, a lime and bottle of tonic. Perfect G&T kit. It’s currently on offer with £3 off (last checked 16/05/18) at Waitrose.
Its aromatic, clean cut aromas come from our hand harvested walled garden produce, nestled deep in the Scottish Highlands. This really is a special addition to any Gin lovers cabinet. The perfect gift idea with a twist!
Why we like it – I fell in love with the bottle and the fact that it’s made using botanicals from it’s own walled garden. Anyone who knows me will understand why I found this particularly endearing.
Where we got it – the RHS Malvern Spring Festival 2018. I was buying this gin even before I tried it.
Elemental Cornish Gin is one of the first gins to be exclusively distilled and bottled in Cornwall in over 300 years. The botanicals include Juniper berries from Croatia, Coriander seed from Spain, Cassia bark from China and Orris root from Morocco. The remainder of the recipe is a closely guarded family secret.
Why we like it – we were told it was a local Cornish gin and knew it was unlikely we would have seen it anywhere back home. We loved the spicy notes and subtle after heat that seemed to linger.
Joe’s Gin was first distilled in the street outside the bar on 5th May 2017. Joe Prevett, our barman made the recipe for the aromatics, using wild fennel, pink pepper, lemon, juniper and cardamon to make a really smooth gin, it has been a hit since the first sip and we distill every few months to keep the stocks up. Each bottle is numbered and the label is from an original work by artist Bas Kennedy who has captured the very the spirit of this very special gin.
Why we like it – a gin recipe made by the bar man at one of our favourite restaurants in the UK, and as far as we know you can’t get it anywhere else.
Where we got it – we picked up our bottle from Joe’s Bar in The Seahorse restaurant whilst on a holiday in Dartmouth. It also happened to be the restaurant’s 10th anniversary, so the gin was a special anniversary edition.
Vidda Torr Gin is made with natural botanicals foraged from the Norweigan wilderness. Vidda (meaning ‘mountain plateau’) is an interpretation of a traditional British dry gin infused with Nordic botanicals. Inspired by Norway’s majestic beauty.
Why we like it – we’re yet to try it as it’s the latest addition to the collection. Will update once we’ve had a chance to crack it open.
Where we got it – the June box from our Craft Gin Club subscription. Our gin wall is now over-flowing and may require an upgrade.
Thanks for reading. Now go pour yourself a gin!