AN AROMATIC GIN DISTILLED WITH OLIVES AND FRESH HERBS
A BATCH DISTILLED GIN INFUSED WITH
- Juniperus CommunisJuniper
- Coriandrum SativumCoriander
- Angelica ArchangelicaAngelica Root
- Citrus LimonLemon Peel
- Citrus SinensisOrange Peel
- Ocimum BasilicumBasil Peel
- Rosmarinus OfficinalisRosemary
- Thymus VulgarisThyme
- Thymus CitriodorusLemon Thyme
- Olea EuropaeaManzanilla olives
- Laurus NobilisBay laurel leaves
- Elettaria CardamomumCardamom
The main flavouring in all gins, juniper is part of the cypress family and the berries (actually small cones) used in gin usually come from Italy, Serbia, Albania or Macedonia. Originally used to treat stomach pain, it’s been used for medicinal purposes for centuries. Currently we source our juniper berries from Albania. The flavouring comes from the essential oils within the berries: fragrant yet spicy with overtones of pine, this is the quintessential gin flavour!
The second most important botanical in our gins, coriander seeds contain an essential oil called linalool which is spicy, fragrant yet with citrus notes. It provides lovely citrus top notes to gin and we’re pleased to say we source our coriander seeds locally.
Angelica root is the third key botanical in our gins. Important because it binds the oils of the various botanicals together, marrying them to provide length (ie to ensure none of them fade away) and substance. On its own it’s a rather musty, rooty (think forest floors) flavour, but does also have citrus and pine notes. The dried root was an ancient remedy for digestive problems and is often used to flavour spirits and liqueurs.
We use the peels rather than the flesh of the fruit because the peels hold a high percentage of the fruit’s oils. Lemon peel works well with the coriander and provides fresh citrus lemon flavours.
As with the lemon, we use the peels rather than the flesh, as this is where all the beautiful citrus orange oils lie.
Basil is well known from Italian cooking, but also has a myriad of traditional medicinal uses. Bold, fresh and herbaceous as a gin botanical, it adds sweetness and freshness to our Mediterranean Gin.
Piney and fresh, rosemary works well with juniper and adds a longer finish to our Mediterranean and London Dry gins, bringing out fresh herbaceousness. We source our rosemary from the Franschhoek Valley.
Used mostly in cooking, thyme was originally used by the Egyptians for embalming and used by the Ancient Greeks as incense in their temples. It contains various essential oils including linalool (found in coriander) and also has slightly bitter earthy yet minty notes.
Lemon thyme has a strong lemony fragrance and brings fresh notes without the bitterness of ordinary thyme. Used together in our Mediterranean Gin, the two thymes give herbal, lemony mint notes.
A Spanish olive variety, we source ours from the Stellenbosch hills, where they are brined for us. We use the whole olives as well as some of the brine, which gives a wonderfully savoury note to our Mediterranean Gin. The olives have a slightly nutty, slightly smoky yet fresh flavour.
A highly aromatic leaf, and a popular cooking spice, bay leaves give gin herbal yet floral notes. The main essential oil found in the bay leaf is Eucalyptol, which marries well with juniper and adds a complexity to our Mediterranean Gin.
Cardamom is the third most expensive spice in the world (after saffron and vanilla): luckily a little goes a very long way! We use green cardamom pods from India, which add delicate spice and eucalyptus flavours to our Mediterranean gin.
THE PERFECT HOPE MEDITERRANEAN G&T
4 parts Indian tonic
Garnish with a slice of orange, a sprig of rosemary or a sprig of basil
Or serve it dirty with a green olive and a dash of brine