*Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you choose to make a purchase. I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers.
If you get to know me much at all, you’ll quickly learn that gin is my favorite alcohol for all manner of cocktails. I love how each one can be so different from the next. So when I have the chance to sample new gins – especially unusual local varieties – I eagerly accept.
Luckily, the ladies of Trust Heart, Venture Forth include a number of other gin drinkers, who brought a lovely assortment to our weekend house party. I knew there was a reason I fit into this group so well.
Whitley Neill Rhubarb and Ginger Gin tasted like a delicious rhubarb custard, sweet and floral. It was a little too sweet for an everyday gin, but something I would happily drink in the summer or after dinner. The bright plum of the bottle was striking. It’s the color I strongly associated with this trip and kept seeing everywhere, so it was the first bottle I was drawn towards. They also make a quince gin, which sounds like a match made in heaven.
Elephant Gin also came in a unique bottle, decorated with vintage style labels, wrapped with string, and stoppered with a cork. It wasn’t just clever ploy, because the gin inside the bottle was just as interesting. It was fresh and crisp, with a number of unique African botanicals in the mix. It also contains elderflower, which is one of my favorite gin pairings, and worked well with Elderflower Tonic Water*. They donate 15% of every bottle to two wildlife conservation groups in Africa, which is another great reason to pick up a bottle.
It was a night of beautiful bottles, and Drumshanbo Gunpowder Irish Gin did not disappoint. Besides which, how could I resist gin and tea in the same bottle? The tea and botanicals made for a bright and flavorful gin with a clean palette. This gin had an amazing complexity, and was my hands down favorite of the evening. I sampled a sip neat, as well as with different tonics, and it was good in every combination.
We also sampled the end of a bottle of Four Pillars Bloody Shiraz Gin that had been hand-carried all the way from Australia by one of our group. It was quite different – delicious, fruity, and great as a cocktail, but without the crisp, herbal flavors I associate with gin. The bottle was gone by the time I thought to take a photo, but as you can see in the distillery’s product photo, the color is just gorgeous.
Do you have a favorite English gin? Please share your recommendations in the comments.