Microwaves are a waste of time when it comes to enhancing the flavour of food. Mine is rarely used, except for heating up porridge or the endless cups of tea and coffee that I let go cold when I’m busy with the website. However, Ryan Chetiyawardana’s Nuked Negroni (from his excellent book, Good Things to Drink) shows what a useful tool it can be for making drinks!
Heating the ingredients for a Nuked Negroni draws out the flavours and adds depth to the drink that isn’t there when you simply stir it down.
It was a particularly cold afternoon in Melbourne when I was playing with this recipe and, impatient as I am, I couldn’t wait for the drink to cool, so enjoyed it warm. And do you know something? It was the best thing since mulled wine. Warmed Negroni for the win!
Ingredients for a Nuked Negroni (makes 6-10 depending on your generosity levels!)
300ml gin (I used Melbourne Gin Company)
300ml sweet vermouth
sprig of rosemary
Remove a strip of zest from the grapefruit with a peeler. Add this to a microwave proof bowl with the other ingredients. Cover and microwave on high for 3 mins. Allow to cool, and strain into a bottle. To serve, add a generous measure to a rocks glass, add ice and a slice of grapefruit.
OR for a winter warmer
Allow to cool to a drinkable temperature and serve with a grapefruit twist. Enjoy!
Pretty much every day of the year is Gin Day for me, but World Gin Day gives us an excellent excuse to bring everyone together to celebrate our collective love for our favourite spirit.
I’m fortunate enough to receive lots of different gins to try from the best distilleries and I love being able to share some of those with you. Previous competitions have only had one or two winners, but the World Gin Day 2017 competition is MASSIVE. I have FIFTEEN, yes FIFTEEN prizes up for grabs, raising your odds of winning considerably!
TAKE A LOOK!
Poltergeist Gin Unfiltered (RRP $90)
Poltergeist is the first Tasmanian gin to win Double Gold at the prestigious San Francisco World Spirits Awards, an extraordinary achievement from the beautiful Shene Estate distillery.
Patient Wolf Gin (RRP $90)
A bottle of Brunswick’s own. Patient Wolf has garnered lots of attention since it’s launch. Dave and Matt have used a beautiful Muller still to create their gin which features Tonka bean as an unusual botanical.
Garden Tiger Gin (RRP $84.99)
An incredible contemporary gin, Capreolus Garden Tiger Dry Gin is made in Gloucestershire using an impressive 34 botanicals, of which most are secret. Two that are revealed are fresh Sicilian blood orange zest and lime-tree flowers. Winner of the Whisky Exchange Spirit of the Year 2017.
Old Youngs Six Seasons Gin (RRP $80)
Old Youngs Distillery from WA is the quiet achiever in the world of Australian gin. Aside from winning a slew of medals at the American Distilling Institute Awards this year, it also won Distillery of the Year (alongside Hoochery) at the Australian Distilled Spirits Awards.
The gin is inspired by the Six Seasons of the Noongar people who have inhabited the Southwest of Western Australia for millennia. Working in conjunction with a local bush food expert and an acclaimed Noongar chef renowned for his creative use of native produce – Six Seasons was conceived using 3 traditional gin botanicals and 6 native botanicals, including juniper myrtle and thryptomene flowers which are unique to this gin. The result is a savoury, herbal, almost earthy gin.
This limited edition sold out extremely quickly and this bottle is from master distiller James Young’s personal collection.
The Weaver (RRP $89)
One of the best savoury Australian gins on the market, The Weaver comes in at 50% ABV, packing a flavoursome punch. It’s the perfect gin if you love martinis.
Red Hen Gin (RRP $72.68)
Just four months after launching Red Hen Gin won a gold medal in the Contemporary Gin category at the 2017 Australian Distilled Spirit Awards, and it was also crowned Champion Small Batch Spirit in Australia!
G’Vine Gin (RRP $84.99)
A beautiful contemporary gin, G’Vine is made with the flowers of the grapevine that bloom for only 10 days. These are collected, steeped in alcohol and then added the other distilled botanicals that make this deliciously floral gin.
Archie Rose X Horisumi – Winter Edition (RRP $99)
Horisumi – Winter is the second release in a series of four rare gins made in collaboration with acclaimed tattoo artist Kian Forreal (Horisumi), each inspired by a different Japanese season.
Botanicals used include; Tasmanian kombu, Australian Fuji apples and, in a first for Archie Rose, the infusion of two Japanese green teas – aromatic sencha and savoury genmaicha.
East London Liquor Company Gin (RRP $79.99)
East London Liquor Company Dry Gin is a terrifically balanced and tasty gin that offers great versatility at an affordable price.
Animus Distillery Arboretum Gin (RRP $115)
Animus Distillery caused quite a stir at Junipalooza Melbourne in 2016 where they launched their 3 gins. Arboretum in particular was very well-received. A complex herbaceous gin that features a range of local estate-grown ingredients: Fresh strawberry gum leaf, lemon thyme, rosemary, oranges and native bush tomato sit alongside the classic gin notes of bold juniper, coriander seed, and citrus. It’s easy to see why this won a Silver Medal at the Australian Distilled Spirit Awards 2017.
Melbourne Gin Company Gin (RRP $69.99)
Master Distiller, Andrew Marks, distills each botanical individually in an alembic copper-pot still. He blends these together to create Melbourne Dry Gin using his skills as a winemaker to balance the elements to perfection.
Kilderkin Barrel-Aged Gin (RRP $95)
The first release of a barrel-aged gin from Kilderkin Distillery in Ballarat. Made with their London Dry Gin (Scoundrel) it has been carefully aged in small American Oak Barrels. Ageing softens the juniper, but seems to lift the other botanicals including the coriander, orris, angelica, and green and brown caradamom. The gin is soft and smooth with oaky nuances.
Brookie’s Gin (RRP $74.99)
New kid on the block, Brookie’s gin is a fantastic Australian gin bursting with native botanicals from Byron Bay created with former Master Distiller of The Botanist, Jim McKean.
Four Pillars Bloody Shiraz Gin (RRP $85.00)
Do I really need to say anything about this gin? What started as a random experiment (Master distiller, Cam, wanted to see what would happen if he steeped Shiraz grapes in gin) has now grown into a best-seller beloved by all who taste it. This year’s vintage even crashed the Four Pillars website due to overwhelming demand. Absolutely thrilled to be offering this as part of the World Gin Day Competition 2017.
Gilbert & George Gin Brooch and Lip Balm from the Gin Queen store!
I’ve loved the response the Gin Queen store and these two items have been really popular!
THIS COMPETITION IS NOW CLOSED
Terms and Conditions
- One entry per person
- Competition is open to over 18s only
- Winners will be drawn at random and allocated a number and will be matched to the corresponding number allocated to each prize.
- Prizes cannot be swapped
- Open to UK, Australian and NZ residents only
- Competition closes midnight 18th June. Winners will be notified via email.
My favourite day of the year has to be World Gin Day, a global celebration of all things gin! With the explosion of Australian gins, World Gin Day 2017 is going to be a cracker!
I take my role as Australian Ambassador for World Gin Day very seriously and have been busy checking the global website for all the fantastic Australian events that are happening. You can see the full list here, but I’ve picked a few highlights, to help you plan your day!
My home town has always been fantastic at organising World Gin Day events, not surprising given the number of new distilleries popping up. There is lots to choose from!
Visit Four Pillars Gin Distillery ~ 10.30am-9pm
Free gin tastings all weekend, including the newly released Bloody Shiraz Gin, cocktail specials, freshly baked scones with Four Pillars Orange Marmalade, and a food truck serving pulled (gin) pork burgers made with Four Pillars Gin Pig.
Open from 10.30am each day, until 9pm on Saturday and 5.30pm on Sunday. Free entry.
Gin Extravaganza at Gin Palace ~ 12pm-3am
Gin Palace Melbourne ALWAYS puts on a great World Gin Day and this year is no exception.
The Gin Palace will be transformed for one day only into a Harem of Juniper pleasures.
• A Four Pillars 3 martini lunch focusing on local produce (22 seats available) – Book tickets here.
• Brookie’s Botanical Brunch, with 3 cocktails and light snacks – Book tickets here.
• Poor Toms Strawberries and cream martini
• Plymouth Martini massages.
• Hendricks Tea Party – Down the rabbit hole Swamp Room take over
• Gin and Gin Palace inspired cake, cupcakes and lollies
• Special performances and entertainment.
• 2 for one martinis, negronis and G&Ts from midday until 8pm
Open 12pm – 3am
Book tickets here:
Artemis Gin x Taxi Kitchen
In celebration of World Gin Day on Saturday 10th June, Taxi Kitchen and Artemis Gin are collaborating to bring you an afternoon of food and gin.
5 iconic Taxi Kitchen courses matched with 5 bespoke Artemis cocktails, all inspired by the gins botanicals. Tickets are $150pp and include a bottle of specially distilled Artemis x Taxi Kitchen gin to take home.
Call 9923 2065 or email email@example.com
Gin and a chat with Sacha La Forgia at Bad Frankie ~3pm OR 7pm
Sit down for an intimate discussion over gin with Sacha La Forgia from Adelaide Hills Distillery and get to know the distiller’s production and distilling methods as well as learn about, taste the variety of Adelaide Hills Distillery gins on offer, and get an exclusive sneak peek at new products coming out.
A fun and intimate way to experience AHD gins and learn the story behind the relatively young distillery, which has seen much success since its inception in 2014. For example, their 78˚ Gin received a Gold Medal, The Italian a Silver Medal and The Gunnery a Bronze Medal at The 2016 San Francisco World Spirits Competition.
Tickets are $50pp and include
- A welcome negroni and Bad Frankie (signature) jaffle
- 2 hours with the distiller to learn about the history, production and gins of AHD
- 3 X tasters of AHD gins
- An exclusive look at new products on the horizon
- A gin cocktail and sweet to finish
Bass & Flinders Gin Degustation at Papa Goose ~7pm
A four course gin degustation at Papa Goose showcasing the Bass & Flinders range.
Tickets are $140pp. To book call Papa Goose on 03 9077 8117 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Kilderkin Distillery Open Day
The Kilderkin team will be distilling their first small batch Navy Strength gin on World Gin Day! Plus tours, tastings, and drinks.
Kilderkin Distillery, 11A Michaels Dr, Alfredton VIC 3350, Australia
Melbourne Gin Company Takeover of Mountain Goat Beer
The Melbourne Gin Company will be celebrating World Gin Day at Mountain Goat Brewery!
MGC distiller Andrew Marks will host a Botanical Masterclass followed by drinks at the bar with MGC cocktails, Mountain Goat Beer and Pizza!
Masterclass from 4.30pm – 5.30pm (ticket includes MGC G&T) Book here.
Drinks at the bar 6pm – Late
The Barbershop presents Mother’s Ruin A Cabaret About Gin ~ 6-9pm
The Barbershop presents a bespoke cocktail menu and a performance of critically acclaimed hit, Mother’s Ruin: A Cabaret about Gin.
Tickets are $35pp. Book here.
All tickets will receive a Bombay Gin Cocktail on arrival.
Doors open from 6:00pm. No reserve seating.
Manly Spirits Co. Distillery ~ 1.30-5.30pm
Join the team from Manly Spirits Co. Distillery and Gin Lane for an exclusive tour and tasting at the distillery beginning at 1.30pm. Following the tasting feel free to settle in, chat and sip some very tasty Gin cocktails on offer in the Distillery Tasting Bar.
Food will be available from a food truck on site.
$22 per person, book tickets here.
Hains & Co Gin Garden
Hains & Co will be hosting a Gin Garden – think Alice in Wonderland but for adults…who love gin.
Festivities kick off at 6pm – every hour, on the hour, they’ll introduce a must-try gin (and G&T) and will have each company’s brand ambassadors on hand to talk about all things gin.
Featuring 78 Degrees, Melbourne Gin Company, Ferdinands Dry Saar, Fair Gin, Tanqueray, and Rogue Society gins.
From the crew in The Galley, Gin Soaked Smoked Skirt Steak Tacos, Elote Corn Salsa, Spiced Slaw, Candied Jalapeños will be part of the night’s menu.
Dutch Courage Officer’s Mess ~ 11.30am til late
Featuring five masterclasses, live entertainment, all day specials & massive giveaways – does a whole bottle of gin every hour whet your appetite?! – what more could a gin lover want? With experts from Martin Millers, Fever Tree, Botanist, Jinzu, Tanqueray, Kangaroo Island Spirits and even Brisbane’s very own Humpybong Distillery on hand to answer every gin nerd’s questions, it’s a pilgrimage where everybody ends up in heaven!
11.30am – The history of gin w/ Kangaroo Island Spirits (Jon Lark)
1.00pm – Enjoying food & gin together w/ Jinzu (Jaime Fleming)
2.30pm- Making gin cocktails w/ Botanist & Gin Mare (Mark Hickey)
4.00pm – Pairing tonic to your favourite gin w/ Fever Tree (Glenn Morgan)
5.30pm – Sensory spices & basket distillation w/ Martin Millers (Amy Grieg)
* session topics & times subject to change
I hope you’ve got some ideas on how to spend World Gin Day. You can follow my adventures on instagram – I’ll be at Junipalooza London – or check out the #worldginday hashtag to see what everyone else is up to.
It’s a fantastic day, so please drink responsibly.
I’m about to head off to the UK for some more ginanagins in the lead up to Junipalooza. Finalising my itinerary I’m reminiscing about my visit two years ago when one of the (many) distilleries I visited was East London Liquor Company, the first vodka, gin and whisky distillery in that part of London for 100 years.
Part of founder Alex Wolpert and distiller Tom Hill’s mission was to create a gin that was accessible in terms of price without compromising on flavour. They achieved this with their first expression that I reviewed here.
Like most distillers, it wasn’t long before Tom was itching to create another gin. Distillers are wont to do that. In spite of producing something spectacular, the love of playing (sorry distilling) with all sorts of ingredients is part of the magic of gin production. The possibilities are endless.
Not content with producing one, Tom ended up producing two and I was thrilled to learn that East London Liquor Company Premium Batch No. 2 is now available in Australia.
East London Liquor Company Premium Batch No.2 Botanicals
Looking at the list of botanicals used in Batch No. 2 my mind immediately leapt to an image of a traditional english herb garden. Juniper, coriander seed, orris root, angelica, and lemon peel are all familiar ingredients in gin. However, the addition of winter savoury, fennel seeds, sage, bay leaf and lavender adds a herbaceous dimension to this complex gin.
Tasting East London Liquor Company Premium Batch No.2
On the nose the herbs come through, particularly the thyme and fennel. To taste, initially there are bright citrus notes that develop into delicious, almost chewy herbal flavours with sage and bay leaf most evident. There is a subtle hint of lavender before a lengthy finish rounded our with white pepper. The bold flavours are supported by a 47% ABV but this is still a smooth, sippable gin.
Drinking East London Liquor Company Premium Batch No.2
Garnished with thyme and lemon, Batch No. 2 makes a solid gin and tonic. As a lover of savoury gins (think West Winds Cutlass and Gin Mare) this gin stands out as a perfect martini gin. Try it wetter (with more vermouth) to encourage those herbaceous notes to come to the fore. I was also inspired to try it in Ryan Magarian’s The Lady Sage Cocktail.
Country of Origin: UK
For information about Australian stockist contact Savant Spirits.
Manly Spirits gin comes, unsurprisingly, from Manly Beach in New South Wales. Owners David and Vanessa, first floated the idea of opening their own distillery in 2015 during a visit to Tasmania. David has a background in chemical engineering and Vanessa’s is in marketing and design (more on that later), so a pretty useful combination!
Two years later they welcomed Tim Stones (former Global Brand Ambassador for Beefeater Gin) as Head Distiller and Production Manager and launched their Pozible campaign. During his time at Beefeater, Tim learnt from Desmond Payne, (the longest-serving distiller in the world) and Sean Harrison, Master Distiller at Plymouth Gin as well as studying for his General Certificate in Distilling and completing hands-on training with the teams both in London and Scotland.
David and Vanessa are Manly locals with a deep connection to the area, in particular to the sea (both are keen swimmers, divers and surf lifesavers). The team approached established forager Elijah Holland (who worked with renowned chef René Redzepi at the Noma pop-up in Sydney last year) to assist in selecting botanicals for the gin.
Elijah recommended sea lettuce (Ulva lactuca) which clings to rocks and can be readily harvested at low tide (it’s the only seaweed that can be harvested freely, everything else has to be foraged under license).
Manly Spirits Gin Botanicals
Aside from the sea lettuce, Manly Spirits Gin contains; juniper, angelica root, coriander seed, orris root, orange peel, cardamom, finger lime, aniseed myrtle, and mountain pepper leaf. Tim says he found working with Australian botanicals challenging, but “inspiring”.
On the nose Manly Spirits gin has bright citrus notes, delicate pine aromas juniper and the merest hint of ozone. Tasting it, the citrus comes through as well as fresh pine. It has a savoury characteristic, not quite umami but getting there, and rounds out with a white peppery finish. Well balanced, delicious flavours and a good length, Manly Spirits Gin is a quality spirit that will serve you well in a variety of drinks.
How wonderful does this martini look? You’ll be pleased to know that it tasted just as good. A cracker in my opinion. Bright citrus flavours and aromas are drawn out by the vermouth and a good peppery finish.
Aside from being a delightful gin, I must mention the attention to detail that has gone into the packaging of Manly Spirits Gin. In an increasingly crowded gin market, standing out from the other brands on the shelf is as important as making a tasty liquid. Vanessa’s design skills are apparent in the custom-made bottle. The fibonacci sequence pattern gave her inspiration for the textured base and represents balance and perfection in nature, the blue glass is a nod to her connection to the sea and the eye-catching lid features the Eastern blue devil fish, the Manly Spirits emblem.
Manly Spirits Gin
You can also visit their cellar door.
The opening of Kilderkin Distillery in Ballarat restores the historical connection the town has with distilling. Warrenheip Distillery was based nearby from 1864. By 1894 it was the only distillery making whisky in Victoria. It continued to do so until just after World War One when production moved to the Corio Distillery in Geelong.
I recently visited Kilderkin distillery where I met the owners Chris Pratt and Scott Wilson-Browne as well as Scott’s partner Vanessa.
Chris, a psychologist by trade, and Scott, renowned craft brewer and the man behind Red Duck Brewery, met over their shared love of beer. Chris confided in me that he had a project to drink a different craft beer every day of the year, and he and Scott kept bumping in to each other over the years at different beer events. With Chris hailing from Scotland, the chat soon turned to making whisky and eventually, gin.
Why Kilderkin Distillery?
A kilderkin is a cask, usually 16 or 18 gallons. Chris and Scott thought the name suited their background in beer and their plans to make whisky.
The stills were made by Peter Bailley at Knapp Lewer in Tasmania. It was to Peter that Bill Lark first went when he wanted to open his distillery 25 years ago, requesting that they look as close to Macallan stills as possible. Knapp Lewer stills can also be found at Archie Rose, Shene Estate & Distillery and Stone Pine Distillery. Chris and Scott’s assisted with the design and included the option for the botanical basket to be removed, allowing greater flexibility.
Like a lot distilleries, Kilderkin have started out making gin. There are two Kilderkin distillery gins, ‘The Larrikin’ and ‘The Scoundrel’.
‘The Larrikin’ is a contemporary Australian gin made with native botanicals, including lemon myrtle. I find that lemon myrtle can often overwhelm gins (less is definitely more), but ‘The Larrikin’ is tasty and well-balanced. ‘The Scoundrel’ is a more traditional London dry style and a delicious one at that. There is also an aged gin that has been rested for three months in American oak bourbon barrels. They hope to have their whisky ready by 2019.
Kilderkin Distillery, 11A Michaels Drive, Alfredton Ballarat, VIC 3350.
Cellar Door open 10am-4pm Monday – Friday and 12-5pm on Saturdays.
You can follow them on Facebook.
Health food trends often spill over into the cocktail world. Matcha, beetroot, and cocktail oil (think Dave Kerr’s winning entry into the Bacardi Legacy competition, The Viento) are some trendy ingredients that have found their way into cocktails, I’ve even tried using Kombucha!
The Beach House cocktail is taken from Dan Jones book Gin: Muddle, Shake, Stir. He mixes gin with coconut water (another hyped up food trend) and lime juice to create a tropical gin cocktail that’s a worthy substitute for a gin and tonic. Tempted as I was to add an umbrella, I used one of my new bamboo straws instead!
Ingredients for a Beach House
15ml freshly squeezed lime juice
chilled coconut water
lime slice to garnish
Add the gin and lime juice to a highball glass and add crushed ice. Top up with chilled coconut water and stir. Add a slice of lime and serve.
Coconut water has plenty of claims that it has weight loss benefits, improves skin condition and offers superior hydration to plain old water, but most of this has been debunked. I still enjoy a glass as I like the taste and I figure it has to be healthier than cordial or fizzy drinks. Right?
Australian gin distillers have once again performed well against stiff global competition at the 2017 San Francisco World Spirits Competition. I am so proud of our Australian gin distilling industry and the recognition they are receiving on the international stage.
The number of gins entered into the competition increased to 268 entries in 2017 from 197 in 2016 (not including flavoured or aged gins).
This year Australian gins won 2 Double Golds (up from 1 in 2016), 4 Golds (down from 7 in 2016), 11 Silver (same as 2016) and 8 Bronze (up 1 from 2016). That means a total of 26 medals (the same overall result as in 2016).
The state with the most medals was Victoria (7), followed by South Australia and New South Wales (6 each), Tasmania and Western Australia (3 ) and Queensland with one medal.
This is an amazing achievement for our fledgling industry. I can’t wait to see what they do in 2018.
Here are the results:
DOUBLE GOLD MEDAL 2017 (Outstanding; earning top marks from all judges.)
The West Winds Broadside (WA)
23rd Street Distillery Gin (SA)
GOLD MEDAL 2017 (an excellent product, meeting very high standards)
Melbourne Gin Company Dry gin (VIC)
Poor Toms Gin (NSW)
Brookie’s gin (NSW)
Distillery Botanica Rather Royal Gin (NSW)
SILVER MEDAL 2016 (A finely crafted spirit, well above average.)
Applewood gin (SA)
Poltergeist True Spirit (TAS)
Archie Rose Signature Dry gin (NSW)
Four Pillars Navy Strength gin (VIC)
Bass & Flinders Monsoon gin (VIC)
Dobson’s gin (NSW)
Manly Spirits gin (NSW)
KIS O gin (SA)
Splendid gin (TAS)
Hippocampus gin (WA)
KIS Old Tom gin (SA)
Bronze (A well-crafted spirit that deserves recognition.)
The West Winds Captains Cut (WA)
Bass & Flinders Soft & Smooth gin (VIC)
Botanic Australis gin (QLD)
Four Pillars Modern Australian gin (VIC)
KIS Wild gin (SA)
Patient Wolf gin(VIC)
What is the San Francisco World Spirits Competition?
Launched in 2000, the San Francisco World Spirits Competition is considered the most respected and influential spirits competition in the world, with a rigorous judging process involving highly controlled blind-tastings with an expert panel who only receive information on spirit type, ABV and age (where applicable) to remove bias.
Hendrick’s gin has always been an advocate of the peculiar and unusual and their latest pop-up “The Awakening”, promises to pique your curiosity.
Described as a “theatrical cocktail experience”, The Awakening takes you on a journey through a series of scenarios and encounters brought to life by the Siren Theatre Company. At each stage you will receive a different Hendricks’ serve; a classic, a seasonal and an experimental.
This pop-up is only running for one weekend over the 2nd-4th June at the Commune in Sydney. Tickets are $30 per person and include 3 Hendrick’s cocktails and access to the Hendrick’s cocktail bar at the conclusion of your experience.
Win tickets to Hendrick’s Gin ~ The Awakening
I have ONE PAIR of tickets to give away to a lucky winner for Friday 2nd June at 7pm.
THIS COMPETITION HAS NOW CLOSED
Hendricks The Awakening runs from 2nd-4th June 2017 at COMMUNE, 901 Bourke Street
Waterloo, Sydney 2017.
Tickets are available from Eventbrite.
Red Hen Gin is made at the first urban distillery in Adelaide. Created by four school friends, Luke Page and brothers Michael, Anthony and Daniel Vallelonga, the gin is named after the train that they used to catch to school together.
The boys grew up in the gateway to the Barossa and they are all passionate about South Australian produce. The Vallelonga brothers have made their own wine with their Nonno (grandfather) from grapes they grew themselves, and together with Luke have also brewed beer as a fun side project. Since they began distilling they’ve uncovered some family connections with the booze industry in Australia. Both grandfathers were Publicans in Gawler, where they grew up, and Luke’s Great Aunt was the first woman to hold a Publican’s License in Australia.
It took the Red Hen team two and a half years to perfect their recipe while they battled through the council regulations and licensing requirements (a common theme that crops up regularly when chatting to distillers!). The time was obviously well spent with Red Hen Gin immediately winning a gold medal in the Contemporary Gin category at the 2017 Australian Distilled Spirit Awards, and it was also crowned Champion Small Batch Spirit in Australia!
Made from grape based spirit from the heart of the Barossa valley, Red Hen gin is 100% vapor-infused in a 100-litre still. There are 15 botanicals, including juniper, coriander, orris root, licorice root and cassia bark. Although the team wanted to created a London dry style gin they have used some native ingredients like Muntrie berries which are indigenous to the South Australian coast and give off a sweet crab apple flavour. The inclusion of fresh celery leaf offers a herbaceous peppery note.
Tasting Red Hen Gin
On the nose there are lime zest and sherbet aromas with fresh pine coming through from the juniper. Flavour-wise there is no mistaking Red Hen gin is citrus forward. There is a good juniper flavour and a subtle hint of apple. The finish is lengthy with a pleasant hit of white pepper cutting through the citrus.
Drinking Red Hen Gin
A good gin will work in a variety of drinks. Red Hen gin is excellent in a gin and tonic and I highly recommend it in a dry martini with Maidenii dry vermouth.
The team is planning to create a Navy Strength Gin next as well as a secret spiced rum. They are also collaborating with a local brewery to create the first locally distilled whisky.