Our featured gin this month is our first ever limited edition gin which we have developed in collaboration with Linlithgow Distillery.
The Edition Series will see us work with different Scottish distilleries to develop a single batch gin for our Scottish Gin Club members. Only two gins will be released each year.
We have worked closely with Linlithgow Distillery since January 2018 and we are big fans of their range of gins so it was a natural fit to work with them on our first gin.
About Linlithgow Distillery
Linlithgow Distillery was founded in March 2017 by husband and wife team, Ross and Alyson Jamieson. After long careers in IT they wanted to move in a new direction. Both Ross and Alyson had dreamed of owning their own distillery and came up with the idea for Linlithgow Distillery one evening while enjoying some gin cocktails.
Just 10 months after the distillery was formed, the first batch of LinGin was released. LinGin has proved to be so popular that they had to move premises to a bigger distillery to scale up production within the first year!
In addition to LinGin, 2019 saw the launch of the Four Marys Gins - 4 flavoured gins to celebrate Mary Queen of Scots' Ladies in Waiting. Mary Queen of Scots was born in Linlithgow Palace on 8 December 1542 and, following the death of her father just 6 days later, acceded the throne.
The lockdown period was a busy time for product development at the distillery and August 2020 saw the launch of their first cask aged gin - the original LinGin aged for 93 days in a Glen Moray whisky butt originally used to age bourbon - as well as the Colours Range. We stock all 9 of the Linlithgow's core gins.
The process has been an education for me and I now have a newfound respect for gin makers!
When I first approached Alyson and Ross in January and they talked me through the process of creating a gin Alyson mentioned that the gin recipe was the easy part - she was right!
Sourcing bottles, corks and labels as well as labelling the bottles has been a learning curve but I want to focus on the recipe development.
We started with Alyson outlining the base botanicals and then requesting a brief from me for an idea of the botanicals that I'd like to build the gin around. This allowed Alyson to start some research and development using their test still.
A couple of weeks later, Alyson had the first batch of 4 samples ready for tasting. With lockdown restrictions in place I was not able to visit the distillery to chat through and sample them. We settled on a lunchtime Zoom call to do the tasting!
Each of the samples were very different and Alyson explained the subtle but very important differences between them. I had no idea that small changes to the botanical mix (0.1g in some cases!) would make such a difference to the flavour profile.
We decided to take two out of the four forward and continue tweaking the botanical recipe until we were 100% happy with it. The gin you have received is Recipe 14.
After agreeing the final recipe, Alyson explained the last step was to ensure the recipe would scale up from the R&D still to 'the big still'.
It was a lot of fun working with Alyson and Ross and tasting the samples with the help of family and friends, experimenting with different tonics, mixers and garnishes. We hope you enjoy drinking the gin as much as we enjoyed making it!
Editions Series - Citrus Gin
Released: June 2021
The Citrus Gin is made using a total of 13 botanicals. The full botanical mix includes juniper, coriander, pink grapefruit peel, elderflower, yuzu, lemon peel, rose petals, rosemary, orange peel, cassia, sichuan pepper, orris root and pink grapefruit juice.
Our Citrus Gin is a crisp, fresh summer London Dry gin brimming with citrus notes, earthy herbs and sweet florals. Pink grapefruit, elderflower, yuzu and rose are the backbone of this wonderful gin.
On the nose this gin gives a fresh burst of juniper and citrus with hints of sweet florals in the background.
Tasted neat, again the citrus and juniper are at the front but then you get a warm hit of Sichuan pepper followed by elderflower, sweet lemon sherbet and rose.
When tonic is added this complex gin really opens up to give the full complement of wonderful summery flavours: The pink grapefruit, coriander and citrus peels are prominent in the foreground, closely followed by an earthy savoury hit from the Sichuan pepper and rosemary. But then the gin’s complexity really shines through with a sweetness from the elderflower, yuzu peel and rose petals, leaving a lovely lasting sweet tingle on the tongue.
We had lots of fun making this gin and we want you to enjoy drinking it!
Our favourite serve so far is with lashings of ice, the Just The Tonic Slimline Tonic and a wedge of pink grapefruit or blood orange.
If you like something a little sweeter then we recommend an elderflower tonic with a wedge of pink grapefruit.
We also experimented with elderflower cordial and soda water garnished with some elderflower and a slice of lemon. This is particularly refreshing on a hot day!