Can gin talk terroir?

2nd July, 2012 by Gabriel Stone

Master of Malt has tapped into the current gin revival with a range launch which promises “a completely new concept in the world of gin”.

The UK-based spirits retailer and producer has created a four-strong collection of London Dry gins under the brand name “Origin”. Each uses juniper sourced from a different location around the world, with the aim of allowing consumers to discover the effect of terroir on the flavour of individual gins.

Apart from their juniper source, each of the four gins is made in exactly the same way using English wheat spirit and no additional botanticals. The distillation is carried out at room temperature in a vacuum in order to preserve as much flavour as possible from the juniper berries.

Each bottle comes with a supplementary 10 millilitre vial containing other cold-distilled botanicals, including coriander, fresh lemon peel, bitter orange peel, cardamom, angelica, cassia, liquorice, cubeb berries and camaomile. This allows consumers in search of a more rounded, extra dimension to make their own addition to the gin.

The four, single estate sources used in the Origin range are: Arezzo in Italy, which promises citrus and pine flavours with a long, creamy finish; Meppel in The Netherlands, which offers more savoury tobacco and leather “with an earthy, coffee-rich finish”; Veliki Preslav in Bulgaria, with its floral notes and waxy finish; and finally, Valbonë in Albania, a rich combination of resinous and blackcurrant character, coupled with tobacco and a “chocolatey finish”.

Master of Malt now plans to add further regions to this Origin range over the next few months, with supplier contracts agreed in Macedonia, Kosovo, France, Tasmania and the US.

With an RRP of £34.95 per bottle, Origin is available through Master of Malt and will arrive in Harvey Nichols stores from mid-July.

The idea of linking terroir with spirits rather than just wine has also been explored within other categories, such as Tomas Estes’ Tequila Ocho brand.

For a more detailed look at what’s driving the gin revival and the category’s future evolution, look out for July’s issue of the drinks business.

 

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