A GIN EXPLOSION!

The background of Gin

In the last few years there has been an explosion of Gins on the market.  Here, we explain a little about the background of Gin and why the emergence of the ‘craft Gin’ is in full swing!

Gin is often seen as England’s traditional spirit, these days conjuring up images of an ice cold ‘G & T’, Martini cocktails and long hot English summers.  However its origins are very much from overseas!  The first documented production of Gin was in Holland in the 17th Centuary, where it’s initial function was mostly medicinal but recipies for Jenever (as Dutch gin is called) date back even earlier than this.

Gin first appeared in Britain in the 17th Centuary, brought back by troops fighting in the Thirty Years’ War.  At this time distillation was only taking place in a small way in England, but when King William III (William of Orange) came to the throne in 1689, he prohibited the importation of alcohol and made a series of statutes to actively encourage the distillation of English spirits.  This led to a boom in production, and the consumption of gin increased rapidly, although the majority of it was of a very dubious quality!   A firm favourite of the poor, many people over consumed and the city had an epidemic of extreme drunkenness on their hands which provoked much moral outrage and led to the label ‘Mothers ruin’!   By 1730 London had over 7000 shops that sold spirits alone, and gin was distilled and sold in one fifth of London homes!   The government struggled to bring the ‘Gin Craze’ under control, trying various pieces of legislation during the 18th Centuary and by 1757 had mostly succeeded.

Gin at its simplest, is a spirit flavoured with a variety of botanicals, where the predominant flavour must be juniper.  The rest of the ingredients are left up to the producer but there are certain botanicals which are very common: orange and lemon peel (both fresh and dried); orris and angelica root; coriander; liquorice; anise and cardamom.  The increasing popularity of gin has led to many producers looking at new botanicals.  Elderflower; dandelion; grains of paradise; burdock; saffron; green tea; raspberry; honey;  hops; exotic fruit and locally harvested plants have all been used, each contributing to new, exciting craft gins!

In recent history it was commonly believed that Customs and Excise would not grant a licence to anyone using a still of less than 1800 litres for spirit production, which prevented many people from getting involved.  However in 2012 this was discovered to be a misinterpretation of the very complex law surrounding alcohol production and consequentially a large number of craft and boutique gins have arrived on the market in the 5 years since.

Here we share with you some of our current list – which is sure to be ever changing as new ones are popping up all the time and lots of companies produce limited editions!

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AVIATION AMERICAN GIN

AVIATION AMERICAN GIN

Aviation belongs to an entirely new category of dry gins. These gins embody a shift away from the usual overabundance of juniper toward a more forward balance of botanicals. Aviation explores the rich, floral and savory notes of lavender, cardamom, and sarsaparilla to capture the lushness, spice, creativity, and freshness of the Pacific Northwest. In this way, we offer the world its first real taste of American gin!

THE BOTANIST ISLAY DRY GIN

THE BOTANIST ISLAY
DRY GIN

An explosion of aromas taking you straight to the heather covered hills of Islay is followed by a rich mellow taste.  Cool on entry with a warmth on the back palate; its citrus freshness excites and stimulates the taste buds allowing you to experience a starburst of flavours in which the delicate high floral notes of the Islay botanicals are accompanied by rich bass tones provided by 9 barks, berries, seeds and peels.

BURLEIGHS SIGNATURE LONDON DRY GIN

BURLEIGHS SIGNATURE
LONDON DRY GIN

Distilled in Nanpantan, Loughborough – you can’t get much more local than that!!!

Big robust flavours with an initial hit of dry juniper followed by pine, eucalyptus and citrus with spicy and floral notes in the background.  A long finish with parma violets and warming dry peppery notes.

BURLEIGHS DISTILLERS
CUT GIN

An exceptional crisp and fresh gin.  A different ratio recipe of Burleighs eleven botanicals are used with a higher proportion of softer, floral ingredients.

An initial hit of juniper with floral, earthy, spicy dry notes followed by citrus.  A lovely long warm finish with parma violet, pine, eucalyptus and dry peppery notes.

BURLEIGHS EXPORT
STRENGTH GIN

Burleigh’s Export Strength Gin is expertly distilled to the same botanical recipe as our Signature Gin. Bottling at a higher ABV creates an expression of the recipe with markedly different profile, perfectly suited to a Martini or Negroni cocktail, or a more robust and aromatic gin and tonic.

The nose gives bright juniper up front, backed up by sweet herbal notes.  There is bold juniper in abundance on the palate with sweet floral spice, pine, pepper and citrus.  A long dry finish with peppery warmth and lasting flavours of lemon and juniper.

LIMITED EDITION!
BURLEIGHS PINK GIN

Zesty, floral perfume with vibrant grapefruit to the fore.  A sweet hibiscus, cherry blossom and cranberry palate balanced with intense pink grapefruit zest.  Soft and weighty inthe mouth with pronounced floral notes.  Long, smooth floral fiish with lasting zesty bitterness and aromatic spice.

LIMITED EDITION!
BURLEIGH'S LEICESTER DRY GIN

Crisp, fresh and vibrant nose with warming spice and bright citrus top notes.  An abundance of juniper on the palate followed by nutmeg, citrus zest and herbs.  Earthy spicy notes in the background with a long and dry juniper finish with hints of mace and herbs.

COTSWOLDS DRY GIN

Fresh notes of grapefruit and earthy coriander backed-up by sweet juniper with soft notes of black pepper and a hint of perfumed Cotswolds lavender on the nose.   A clean palate with pine, juniper spice, fresh grapefruit and coriander seed. A touch of dryness from the angelica root with eucalyptus notes from bay leaf. Subtle lime and lavender. A clean and balanced finish with juniper, citrus and some cooling notes from bay leaf and cardamom.

DARNLEY'S VIEW GIN

Scotland 1565, Mary Queen of Scots first spied her future husband, Lord Darnley, through the courtyard window of Wemyss Castle, the historic family seat of renowned vintners and spirit merchants, The Wemyss family.

In recognition of this defining moment, today, the Wemyss family bring you this superbly balanced gin made in the time honoured way of redistilling the botanicals with a four times distilled neutral grain spirit in a pot still.  The gin is a London Dry Gin, so no flavours are added after distillation.

DARNLEY'S VIEW SPICED GIN

Darnley’s View Spiced is made with a selction of ten berries, seeds, peels and roots collectively known as botanicals. The prinicpal botanicals in our recipe are juniper, cinnamon and nutmeg. We decided to bottle at 42.7% as it is the point where the combination of warming spices makes our gin tastes its best.

FIFTY POUNDS GIN

The 1736 Gin Act imposed an annual levy of £50 on those wishing to produce and sell gin.  Shortly after this a family of independent distillers came up with an original recipe and called it ‘Firfty Pounds Gin’ in honour of this levy.  This remained hidden for generations, until their descendants rescued it from oblivion recently.

A secret combination of botanicals is blended with 4 times distilled grain spirit and then left to settle for no less than 3 weeks.  The resulting gin is clean and fresh with hints of citrus and juniper and an exceptional smoothness.

LONDON NO 1 GIN

The London Nº1 consists of 12 different botanics from all around the world. Twelve carefully chosen ingredients that create a unique gin, due to its complexity, its elegance and its perfect balance.

Manufactured in small quantities in London, its unique flavour is the result of the quality of the raw materials used, as well as its distillation in Pot Stills (traditional stills used only for distillation in small amounts).

MARTIN MILLERS GIN

Made to a traditional London Dry Style, this gin uses a mix of ultra traditional distilling methods allied to Martin Miller’s own iconoclastic ‘take’ on gin distilling.

In a break with tradition, there are two separate distillations for the juniper and earthier botanicals that are later ‘married’ or blended with a second separate distillation of the citrus elements of bitter orange peel from Seville, lemon and lime peel.

These techniques contribute to the gin’s unique freshness and clarity of flavour.

MASONS DRY YORKSHIRE GIN

Light fennel upon the nose with fresh, damp grass notes mixed with soft juniper, lime and orange rind, leading to a subtle pepper finish. On the palate, a ripe aniseed start, becoming sweet with fresh, bold citrus flavours including deep orange rind. Plenty of cardamom, green apple and dandelion blend well, leading to a warm, long, mouth-watering finish.

MASONS DRY YORKSHIRE GIN
TEA EDITION

Dry notes of Yorkshire tea are present on the nose, with fresh, light hits as the aromas swirl around. Delicate and fresh upon the palate, with a slight citrus sharpness hitting the senses. Plenty of dry Yorkshire tea notes blast through, with fresh aniseed, cardamom and pepper making an appearance upon the long finish before the tea returns.

MONKEY 47
SCHWARZWALD DRY GIN

Admittedly, it appears somewhat eccentric to claim that a recipe for Gin has the power to unite great British traditions, the exoticness of India and the purity and nativeness of the Black Forest.  And yet it is precisely this eccentricity that defines the enigmatic and venturesome character of Montgomery Collins from whom our Schwarzwald Dry Gin originates.  MONKEY 47 – distilled from 47 predominantly unusual but regional botanicals such as lingonberries and blended with natural spring water.  Cheers!

NELSON'S GIN

Infusing fine and pleasingly original botanicals from across the globe, such as lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves from Thailand, vanilla from Madagascar and cinnamon from Sri Lanka creates a clean, fresh taste and aroma which is at the same time deeply and surprisingly complex.

TWO BIRDS LONDON DRY GIN

Two Birds is produced in the quaint market town of Market Harborough in small batches of just 100 bottles!

Fresh, full flavoured and delicate on the palate, this classic London Dry Gin is full of juniper flavour and distilled with 4 other botanicals, finished off with natural spring water from deep beneath the Charnwood Hills in Leicestershire.  A powerful gin with a smooth and delicate finish.

TWO BIRDS OLD TOM GIN

Nothing to do with a chap called ‘Tom’ – this Gin gets its
name from the unusual Tom cat-shaped plaque that hung outside gin houses during ‘Gin Craze’.


We’ve refined the original 18th Century recipe a touch, while still retaining the slightly sweeter taste which made this spirit so popular. BEST SERVED… Keep it simple with a gin Martini. Mix gin and vermouth then drop in an olive or two.

TWO BIRDS SIPPING GIN

Made in ridiculously small batches (only ever 50 bottles available at any one time) our Sipping Gin is cask rested for a whole three months. Distilled with a rich mix of classic gin botanicals then left to rest in Virgin Oak Barrels and Pecan Wood staves and bottled at 47% volume.

BEST SERVED… A good glug served over ice cold ice. (And maybe some music to set the mood.)

WARNER EDWARDS HARRINGTON
‘MELISSA’ LEMON BALM GIN

Our first creation within the botanical garden range, made with Lemon Balm, a member of the mint family, also known by its name “Melissa Officinalis”. She produces a herbaceous explosion on the palate that is fresh and distinctive with a beautiful citrus and minty finish. Enjoy with tonic or in a cocktail and grow your own garnish with the seeds attached!

WARNER EDWARDS
HARRINGTON DRY GIN

OUR FIRST BORN AND GLOBAL AWARD WINNING HARRINGTON DRY GIN IS TRULY SOPHISTICATED WITH A WELL-ROUNDED AND COMPLEX PALATE. Its unique character and strong notes of cardamom and nutmeg make it intensely warm and smooth; a true pioneer in its class. Robust enough to create a moreish and refreshing gin and tonic but smooth enough to sing in a martini.

WARNER EDWARDS
VICTORIA'S RHUBARB GIN

Made using a crop of rhubarb originally grown in the kitchen garden of Buckingham Palace during the reign of Queen Victoria.  The rhubarb juice is extracted using a traditional fruit press and blended with our Harrington Dry Gin to produce an alluring pink gin that is voluptuous on the palate with a sweet and tangy royal rhubarb explosion. Enjoy with plenty of ice and your favourite tonic, or ginger ale. Authentic British craft at its best.

WILLIAMS ELEGANT 48 GIN

Elegant 48 is made from scratch using rare varieties of apples from our 300 year old bioganic cider orchards. In our bespoke gin still, we add hops, elderflower, juniper, Bramley apple and angelica, plus secret wild botanicals from our meadow and fresh water from our well. Nose: Fresh aromas of juniper, citrus fruit and spices. Palate: Elegant, crisp and fruity followed by warm spices and earthy undertones. Finish: Full bodied, aromatic, complex.

WILLIAMS GB EXTRA DRY GIN

More than just distilled spirit. Juniper buds and berries are added to Chase Vodka for the driest finish, then wild botanical infusions of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, almond, coriander, cardamom, cloves, liquorice and lemon give our one-of-a-kind gin its distinctive flavour.

Nose: Zesty citrus and warm spicy notes. Palate: Juniper, dark chocolate and lemon then rich spices. Finish: Full bodied and robust with a dry finish.

LIMITED EDITION!
WILLIAMS EUREKA CITRUS GIN

We gently infuse our apple based spirit with eleven carefully selected botanicals including juniper, Eureka lemon, lime, Valencian orange, pink grapefruit, elderflower, liquorice and bitter almond.

On the nose lime leads with floral notes of orange blossom and elderflower.  Lime zest up front on the palate drifting into smooth earthyness of liquorice, creating a mellow and rounded midpalate, with a bitter lemon and pink grapefruit finish.

WILLIAMS PINK GRAPEFRUIT GIN

A spectacular pairing of pomelo and pink grapefruits with our award winning GB gin. Floral and zesty, a wave of tartness hits your tongue first, followed by a juicy kick of grapefruit peel. Subtle hints of juniper round out the flavour.
Nose: Powerful notes of fleshy pink grapefruit combined with subtle hints of juniper and lime zest. Palate: Tart grapefruit meets robust juniper. Finish: Strong grapefruit peel

ZUIDAM DUTCH COURAGE DRY GIN

Distilled from 9 botanicals using a unique distillation method, where each botanical is distilled separately in a small pot still.  This ensures the best and freshest flavours are captured and then carefully blended and combined with triple distilled grain spirit to produce a complex and layered flavour from a total of 14 distillations.

A clean fresh citrus nose with earthy juniper notes and a beguiling hint of spice and vanilla.

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