Scottish Gin NewsRound-Up May 2019.
Published: 1st June 2019
Our end of month round-up captures some of the exciting news from the wonderful world of Scottish Gin. From new Scottish Gin expressions to distillery openings and more. If you’ve got a story you’d like us to consider for inclusion in next month’s Scottish Gin News Round-Up then email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Get ready for the Ripple
Lundin Distilling, the distillery behind Gorse Gin, released their second gin expression – Ripple Gin. This new Scottish Gin expression features Scottish Raspberries as a key botanical along with a traditional gin backbone. Iain Brown, distiller and owner at Lundin Distilling spent close to a year perfecting the recipe with numerous tweaks and refinements.
Learn more about Lundin Distilling here.
The countdown begins to The Scottish Gin Awards
The month of May saw the judging panel for The Scottish Gin Awards 2019 gather at Edinburgh’s Corn Exchange to nose, taste and explore this year’s entrants. The event saw judges come together from across the world of food and drink including businesses that support the Scottish drinks sector and esteemed gin educators including Professor Matthew Pauley and Geraldine Coates.
Also amongst the judging panel this year were Emma Stokes, AKA Gin Monkey and founder of World Gin Day, spirits commentator and whisky expert Blair Bowman and Lesley Gracie, head distiller at Hendrick’s Gin. Some of the other judges included author, journalist and food and drink aficionado Sean Murphy from The Scotsman Food & Drink, Ally Hardy from the online Scottish Drinks specialist retailer Craft 56 and James Sutherland, founder of 56 North in Edinburgh, one of the first true dedicated gin bars to open in Scotland.
The awards ceremony is scheduled to take place in early October in Glasgow with the winners announced on the evening.
We recently interviewed the team behind the Scottish Gin Awards – learn more here.
World’s First Scottish Gin to feature Scottish Tea
Broich Single Estate Gin is a new Limited Edition Gin of only 1000 bottles and also a world first from The Teasmith Spirit Company. Part of their Grower’s Edition series of Scottish Gins, this new gin features a carefully selected and harvested Scottish grown tea, Broich black tea. A species of tea that’s been nurtured and grown on the banks of the River Earn in Crieff as part of the Tea Gardens of Scotland group.
Along with the Broich black tea, this new Scottish Gin expression also includes 12 other botanicals including Juniper, Coriander Seed, Orange Peel and more. The addition of the tea has created a gin that has a flavour profile that is juniper led but has bursts of apple and honey.
The first 50 bottles that were taken from the still are available as Broich Single Estate Distiller’s Flush Scottish Gin, which is a super Limited Edition version that comes in a copper foiled presentation box, photo booklet and a special hessian sack containing tea seeds. The seeds will give you a chance to plant and nurture your own Scottish Tea!
Learn more about The Teasmith Spirit Company here.
New McQueen Gin Distillery & New Violet Gin
The new McQueen Distillery was officially opened by the First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon. We joined the McQueen Gin team on the day of the opening. McQueen Distillery, which is housed in the Robert McQueen building, named in memory of Dale’s late father, will allow an increase in production of 1000% – learn more here.
McQueen Gin also released their new Violet Gin as part of Aldi’s popular Scottish Gin Festival. The new McQueen Gin expression includes juniper, coriander, cassia, angelica, orris, almond, liquorice, grapefruit, lime and violet.
Learn more about McQueen Gin here.
BrewDog Distilling Co. take a walk on the wild side
BrewDog Distilling Co., the distillers of LoneWolf Gin released a citrus inspired new gin expression. LoneWolf Cloudy Lemon Gin uses fresh Sicilian lemon peel with their signature LoneWolf Gin being macerated in the peel for seven days before bottling. The gin proved very popular selling out online in just 5 hours!
Learn more about BrewDog Distilling Co. here.
Scottish Gins come home
Scotland may not be vast in geographical size but it does have a dynamic and diverse range of island communities that have played a key role in expanding the story of Scottish Gin. Over the last few weeks it’s been inspiring to see a number of gin brands finally realising their dream of making gin on their islands. Up until recently, a number of gin brands were being made out with Scotland, due in part to some of the complexities of establishing a distillery on a remote island where literally if the weather is bad there is no means of transport off the island.
The Isle of Barra Distillers Co. were granted their full distilling licence and approval of their bonded warehouse facilities. As of May, the team were busy finalising the installation of their temporary gin still whilst their main gin still, which will be designed and built by Forsyth’s in Moray, is fabricated, delivered and installed.
Another island gin brand to see their plans come to fruition were Tyree Gin. The first legal distillery on the Island of Tiree for 217 years! The team at Tyree Gin had always planned to move their distillation back to the island when the time was right. After refurbishing their site in West Hynish in the southwest of the island to accommodate their new Genio still, gin production commenced with the introduction of a very limited edition batch one Tyree Gin.
Last but by no means least, Whitetail Gin brought their gin production back to the Isle of Mull. Along with opening their new island shop and distillery, the team at Whitetail Gin hope to have their distillery ready for island visitors over summer. Although produced outside of Scotland until the recent move, the gin always featured an array of botanicals sourced from the owners small family estate on the island, Tiroran, which includes sea-kelp, heather and pine needles.
The Gin Cooperative on the road
We had an amazing few days on the West Coast of Scotland visiting some of our stakeholders, where we were given the warmest of welcomes. First up we visited the amazing Torridon Hotel, whose Arcturus Gin features a variety of botanicals that are grown in the hotel garden. A truly stunning location with some amazing views. We had a good chat with Dan Bristow-Rose, hotelier and owner who gave us some great insight into both the hotel and background behind Arcturus Gin.
Learn more about Arcturus Torridon Gin here.
Next we headed over to the Gairloch to meet Gordon and Vanessa Quinn, the team behind Badachro Gin. We caught up with Gordon and Vanessa to learn more about their gin journey, their distillery and were given a sneak peak of some new projects. Along with the distillery, the couple own Aird Hill B&B, which has amazing views over Badachro and the local landscape. Gordon and Vanessa kindly put us up for the night so we got a rare evening away from our young family. We finally saw for ourselves why the couple fell in love with the village and surrounding area.
Learn more about Badachro Distillery here.
Finally we headed over to meet one of Scotland’s newest gin makers and distilleries at Ullapool, Highland Liquor Company, the makers of Seven Crofts Highland Dry Gin. We met the team and learned more about their distillation process, the thought behind ‘that bottle’ and more. We were also introduced to their top secret 4th member of the team, a drinks industry veteran who shall remain nameless!
Learn more about Highland Liquor Co. here.
We drove part of the West Coast 500 route – without a doubt one of the most amazing roads in the UK. We spent a great deal of our time away stopping every five minutes as round every corner was something new to see. A truly amazing part of the world and just reaffirmed for us that every Scottish Gin maker is unique not only in the diversity of locations where they make their gin but also how their local landscape and local folklore has helped shaped their great Scottish Gins and businesses.