Colombo Gin is handcrafted in small batches in copper pot stills by Sri Lankan spirit producer Rockland Distilleries, and it dates back all the way to the Second World War when Sri Lanka was known as Ceylon. During that time gin was not allowed to be made outside the UK as the presumption was that good quality London Dry Gin could only be made by the Brits (unlike today where great London Dry Gins are made around the globe).
After a lot of convincing from Rockland Distilleries, customs officials eventually allowed the distillation of gin in Colombo, but known as Ceylon Made Foreign Liquor (CMFL) instead of using the esteemed title of ‘London Dry’. This ruling was also implemented in India creating Indian Made Foreign Liquor around the same time.
But due to limited trade during the war the recipe had to be tweaked, using native ingredients handpicked from Colombo’s public gardens, also known as the Cinnamon Gardens. At the time the only imported botanicals were juniper and angelica root. Little did they know these local ingredients would become a great selling point back in the UK decades later!
Those of you lucky enough to be in the first 250 members from last month, I hope you enjoyed our first ever monthly G&T box! This month we have teamed up with Bramley and Gage to bring you 6 O’clock gins. Each kit will feature a miniature strikingly smooth London Dry Gin and a miniature of their delicious Sloe Gin.
Here’s a little more about Bramley and Gage and the history of 6 O’clock gin.
Christian Jensen, a banking IT specialist, was working in Tokyo and came across a hidden bar serving a “Naked Martini” – just London Dry gin and a twist of lime. Jensen enjoyed the drink so much he regularly returned to the bar during his stay, and on his last visit before returning to London he was presented with a bottle of the gin by the owner. This gin was no longer in production, and the brand on the label was illegible. Jensen made it his personal mission to find or recreate his new favourite spirit when he was back in London.
It’s World Gin Day on Saturday 11th June and to celebrate we thought we’d share some of the World’s best gins with you. The Gin market is booming and there is something for everyones tastes – from your classic London dry to saffron gin to sloe gin to gin made with lobster you’re sure to find something on the market that you enjoy and everyone has their own favourites.
However we have pulled together a few of the very best so let us know what you think… and raise a glass to World Gin Day!
10. Four Pillars Gin – Australia
Until I came across this gin, I had never so much heard of gin from Australia and certainly dared not try it – it seemed like sacrilege! But then I tasted it, it is an absolute cracker, full of cinnamon and orange flavours. Little wonder it won double gold at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition.
We see hundreds of bottles of gin not only pass through our office but also at festivals, events and more. We always take note of any bottles that catch our eye as well of course of any that we love the taste of. We thought it was about time we compiled a list of the most beautiful gin bottles we’ve come across for you to view. There’s quite a few (49) so sit back, make a cuppa or a G&T and have a browse. Let us know your favourites!
We’ve written before about odd gins including the lobster infused gin and this time we’ve come across a gin which has approximately 62 red wood ants inside every single bottle, it’s not purely just infused with ants, it also features flavours of young nettles, spring and angelica.
Behind this unique gin is a collaboration between The Cambridge Distillery and Nordic Food Lab,
A sip of an Old Tom-style distillation offers an interesting look into the history of gin. Sweeter than your classic London dry, it’s often referred to as “the missing link” between old-school Dutch genever (the sweet spirit from which modern gin originated), and the now popular London Gin.
Originating in Britain during the 18th century, Old Tom was the traditional gin of choice for cocktails like the Tom Collins, Gin Rickey, and Martinez. The spirit all but died out in the middle part of the 20th century, though these days it’s enjoying something of a revival. The UK’s Hayman Distillers launched an Old Tom gin in 2007, which is probably the most well known but others soon followed suit including Jensens Gin.
Okay this sounds like some kind of ridiculous title for an article…well it is but it’s also true… kind of!
A new gin has been developed which is aptly named ‘Anti-a Gin’ and is distilled with pure collagen (don’t worry it’s got a range of other things in it so it tastes nice including hazel, nettle, tea tree and chamomile), the collagen in it though is thought to help you stay looking young. The 40% gin combines these properties with a spirit we all love so you’ll not only be able to have a few drinks but stay looking younger!
We’ve heard of some strange drinks before, from whiskey infused with duck fat to bacon vodka and now you’ll be able to get your gin fix while enjoying one of the finer things in life…lobster!
A Michelin starred restaurant called Ter Leepe and the Belgian chef Kristof Marrannes are releasing a Lobster infused gin after months of experimenting with this crustacean and alcohol.
Why would someone make this I hear you ask? Well apparently the chef wanted a spirit which he could pair with the lobster dishes that he serves, he then decided that there wasn’t something on the market so he would have to create his own. The lobsters are soaked in ‘pure alcohol’ for two days in a row, then the lobster itself is thrown away (poor lobsters!) and the resulting liquid is distilled and mixed with another gin. As a result the gin has a taste which works perfectly when paired with lobster dishes, it’s served with tonic (of course) and a garnish of lemon grass, lime and parsley.
Many have questioned whether this is fair of the lobsters with animal rights advocates saying that they suffer during the soaking and it’s a wasteful process, but the restaurant have said that it doesn’t harm them. The name of this unique spirit is Lobstar Premium Marine Gine, it’ll cost you around £45 per bottle ($65) and each bottle has 200g’s of real lobster inside.
Would you try this?