Scottish Gin NewsRound-Up November 2021.
Published: 1st December 2021
November saw the release of a number of special and limited edition Scottish Gins including an 30-month aged gin in an ex-bourbon cask, the first in a series of small-batch experimental gins from Edinburgh Gin, the 2021 edition of Crafty Distillery’s Galloway Gin made exclusively from local botanicals and a gin dedicated to the restoration of Millport’s Town Hall, among many others. These special editions and distillery exclusives demonstrate the appetite to experiment and support and promote local communities… and long may it continue. We hope to see this kind of passion and innovation continue in the Scottish Gin scene. Also, notably, this month’s news round-up sees a section entirely dedicated to green news, with Scotland’s gin makers addressing their carbon footprint and thinking outside the box when it comes to sustainability and recycling.
New Scottish Gins & Special Releases
Crossbill 200 Single Specimen Dry Gin 2021
November 2021 saw the release of the Crossbill 200 Single Specimen Dry Gin, 2021 edition. Produced by Crossbill Distillery at their distillery and gin school in Glasgow, the 2021 edition follows on from previous years, sourcing the juniper used in the gin from a single specimen of plant. The juniper plant in question is located in a secret location in the Cairngorms National Park, with the location only known by a select few, and is said to be around 200 years old. The juniper is slowly macerated with fresh rosehips and fresh spring Scottish water before the distillation process. The resulting gin is said to have intense and concentrated flavours and bottled at 59.8% ABV. Notes of pine, citrus, herbs and spices all come through on the palate from the carefully selected botanicals used in the gin.
Learn more about Crossbill Distilling here.
Avva’s Forgotten Cask
This aged gin has been matured in a Bourbon cask for 30 months. The cask was laid down in February 2019 and most was used for the annual Avva Cask Finish Gin (No 4) in 2019 but a small amount was left behind and literally “forgotten”, until now! Well the “wee bit” turned out to be more than just a “wee bit” and filled 50 beautiful bottles. The gin itself is described as having rich, honey and sweet vanilla notes with a slight spice.
Learn more about Avva Scottish Gin here.
Edinburgh Old Tom Gin
November saw Edinburgh Gin launch the first in a series of experimental-style small batch gins. This first edition is an Old Tom Gin, with a limited number of 500 made. Tonka beans, sarsaparilla root, macadamia nuts and meadowsweet give the gin notes of vanilla and almonds with a rich, nutty, bittersweet flavour. The post-distillation addition of agave syrup enhances the subtle sweetness and gives the gin a smooth and viscous mouthfeel. We’ve also been admiring their ‘Drinkable’ Christmas wreaths, which feature a selection of beautiful gin garnishes… the perfect finishing touch to an Edinburgh Christmas G&T, which is included in this ultimate Christmas Gin gift.
Learn more about Edinburgh Gin here.
Roehill Springs Honeyberry Gin
Roehill released Honeyberry Gin following months of trials. Honeyberries are added to the botanical basket during distillation and then steeped in copious amounts of honeyberries for around three weeks, resulting in deep rich flavour and colour. No sugar or sweetness are added to this gin so it provides a natural, fresh, clean, tart yet sweet flavour with a beautiful rich mouthfeel.
Learn more about Roehill Springs here.
Pentland Hills Firework Gin
Firework Pentland Hills Gin was released just in time for Guy Fawkes Night. This gin contains a warming blend of winter spices such as cinnamon, cardamon and ginger along with some traditional Pentland Hills Gin favourites including cocoa nibs and orange with a little hint of honey.
Learn more about Pentland Hills Gin here.
Ellis Gin No.1
Finally No.1 in the Ellis Gin range has arrived. Following No.2, 3, 4 and 5 releases over the last few years, this No.1 will be the brand’s flagship gin, intended to be the most traditional gin in the range. It’s called No.1 Zesty Gin so as you would expect a traditional London Dry Gin packed with juniper and citrus flavours. We were delighted to be part of the tasting panel, which involved being sent final recipe samples for critique and feedback. The first 100 bottles of the new Ellis Gin No.1 will delivered in a limited edition reusable water bottle. Pre-order here.
Crafty Distillery’s Galloway Gin 2021
The 2021 edition of Crafty Distillery’s Galloway Gin is out now and comes in their new custom bottle but colourless with a lovely frosted finish and purple labelling with a beautifully decorated Galloway box. Like every other year, the ingredients are hand foraged from around Galloway, including local Juniper, Elderberries, Crab Apples, Samphire, Sea aAster and Sea Buckthorn.
Learn more about Crafty Distillery here.
Pickering’s Gin Festive Flavours
Pickering’s Gin launched a range of four brand new festively flavoured gins along with their famous Brussels Sprout flavoured gin. The new festive flavours have been released as a follow up to the huge success of Pickering’s Flavoured Gin Baubles. Causing internet mayhem, Pickering’s renowned Gin Baubles came to the market by storm, selling out in just 82 seconds in 2014. The new festive flavours include Christmas Cookie, Pecan Pie, Chocolate Orange and Later Than Eight, alongside the returning Brussels Sprout.
Learn more about Pickering’s Gin here.
Isle of Cumbrae Distiller’s Restoration Gin
The Isle of Cumbrae Distillery team has released their third gin in the range and it’s a very local, community focussed gin, entitled Restoration Gin. A portion of sales go to the Millport Town Hall restoration project, something the team are obviously very passionate about, having been inspired to setup their distillery in the heart of Millport. The team even put the task of naming and label design out to the local community, with the final design awarded to a 7th generation Millportian, Julie Mapes.
Learn more about Isle of Cumbrae Distillers here.
Linlithgow Distillery Mulled Gin
The team at Linlithgow Distillery has been extremely busy with the release of their custom bottle, Cask Aged Gin and Navy Strength Gin respectively in the last few months. And now they’re treating us to a festive Mulled Gin, following a limited run last Christmas. This recipe features lots of festive flavours with the addition of Lemon Peel, Ginger, All Spice and Clove to provide warming mulled notes to nose and taste.
Learn more about Linlithgow Distillery here.
Sustainable Scottish Gin
The Botanist Gin Decarbonisation
Bruichladdich Distillery, where The Botanist Gin is made, announced ambitious plans to decarbonise their distillation process (within scope 1 & 2) by 2025. The distillery and their energy partner Protium have been granted major funding to further develop innovative hydrogen combustion technology. This green technology does not emit any carbon, or any other greenhouse gases, which would provide a renewable alternative to their current fuel.
Learn more about The Botanist here.
Achroous Gin in a Tin
In a continued effort to reduce, reuse and recycle and following a trial with The Palmerston in Edinburgh, Electric Spirit Co. has rolled out their new 5L returnable kegs to on-trade in partnership with Royal Mile Whiskies. Every time a keg is refilled, it saves seven bottles, seven corks, seven sleeves and a cardboard box from ever entering the waste cycle. And these savings are being passed to their on-trade partners too, making keg gin significantly cheaper per ml than bottled gin.
Learn more about Electric Spirit Co. here.
Arbikie Showcase Nàdar at COP26
November saw Arbikie celebrate their seventh birthday in style by attending COP26 in Glasgow and were represented at the China International Import Expo at Shanghai, celebrating and showcasing their sustainable spirits, which includes Nàdar Gin; the world’s first carbon neutral, climate positive gin with a carbon footprint of -1.54 kg CO2e per 700ml bottle and made using a spirit distilled from peas, which need no synthetic nitrogen fertiliser to grow.
Learn more about Arbikie here.
North Uist Refillery
The North Uist Distillery launched their refillery service at Nunton Steadings in November. Residents or visitors to the island can take their pre-loved bottles of Downpour, Pink Grapefruit, Negroni and Sloe Gins into the Refillery and the team will refill them for a discounted price. New opening times for November are Monday to Friday 10am to 3pm and Saturday 10am to 4pm.
Learn more about North Uist here.
Scottish Gin News
Harris Pop-up Shop
For a limited time only, Isle of Harris Gin is available to purchase directly from the brand in Glasgow at Princes Square. Not only is the popular Harris Gin available to buy but the pop-up includes a selection of their new gifting range and there’s word of some special treats, usually only found in the distillery shop. The pop-up is location on the ground floor of Princes Square, at street level, open seven days a week, from 10am to 8pm.
Learn more about Isle of Harris Distillers here.
The Gin Cooperative
We recently completed a Christmas themed photoshoot in our own studio here at The Gin Cooperative HQ. It was a real labour of love, taking place over 10 days, involving over 80 bottles of gin and lots of present wrapping! We were also lucky enough to visit The Steading Bar in Strathdon Aberdeenshire, which was a beautiful location for some of our Scottish Gin collection and provided an opportunity to capture some of our new Libbey glassware. Thanks again to the team for hosting us!
We ventured to Edinburgh this month, providing us with a much needed catch up with the team at Pickering’s Gin. We last visited Pickering’s Gin in 2018 and Covid-19 has definitely delayed our return so we were delighted to finally revisit the Summerhall based gin distillery. The tours take on a slightly different format now so we were lucky to get the lowdown on the new tour, which continues to rank highly for “things to do in Edinburgh” on TripAdvisor.
Learn more about Pickering’s Gin here.
Having previously met distiller Marc Watson from his time working with Crabbie’s Gin, we caught up with him briefly at the Scottish Gin Awards Judging day in August and were intrigued to learn more about his new role as Distillery & Operations Manager at Holyrood Distillery and their newly released Height of Arrows Gin. So this visit provided a fantastic opportunity to catch up properly with Marc and hear first hand about the distillery’s exciting plans for the future.
Learn more about Holyrood Distillery here.
November Scottish Gin Subscription
November’s Scottish Gin box has officially landed with our subscribers and it includes Darnley’s Gin Spiced Navy Strength – our first ever high strength Scottish Gin to be included as part of our monthly subscription service… and we couldn’t think of a better Navy Strength to get started with. We paired it with Bon Accord Tonic for that classic G&T and Nuisance Drinks Wild Bramble & Rosemary Soda for something a little lighter and slightly festive. As always, we’ll meet with a member of the partnering Scottish Gin (in this case, Distiller Scott Gowans) and our enthusiastic subscribers online to learn more about this fabulous gin and distillery.
Learn more about our Scottish Gin Subscription here.
The Gin Cooperative Features November 2021
Here’s a look back at the editorial features we published in November 2021.
Scottish Gin News Round-Up October – read it here.
A day in the life of Claire Murray, Dunnet Bay Distillers – read it here.
Look through our archive of Scottish Gin news here.