Christmas is now only weeks away! You are probably thinking about putting your feet up, grabbing your favourite gin & tonic and then sitting by the fire? If so, you may want to check out our Ultimate Christmas Gin Guide for Christmas 2017. We have collected 12 of our favourite gins of the moment together in one place, plus we have details of exclusive gift sets and gin filled baubles. Enjoy and cheers from us here at Lussorian!
The Botanist Limited Edition Gift Pack
The Botanist is probably one of our favourite gins. Islay’s first and only dry gin, it’s crafted and distilled on the remote Scottish Island. This year, just in time for Christmas, they are giving their gin a festive twist with a Limited-Edition gift pack!
An enthralling gin (to say the least), there are 9 classic botanicals to which 22 local herbs and flowers provide another dimension of flavours and aromas. All local ingredients are sourced from the hills, shores and bogs of the Hebridean Island by botanical scientists. The impressive blend of botanicals is etched in Latin around the bottle, giving an insight into just how much work and effort has gone into this gin.
Deliciously dry with a smoothness and mellow taste, this is a treat for the senses. With 31 botanicals on show, you may think this gin is overwhelmingly complex; however, it has been balanced perfectly and each flavour can really sing. We particularly loved the citrus freshness combined with wild mint and hints of honey.
The limited-edition Christmas gift pack contains the signature 70cl bottle, as well as a unique mixing glass which allows you to create your own festive drink at home and experiment with an array of seasonal serves. Available for a limited time only from October, The Botanist’s seasonal gift set allows you to explore and discover your perfect gin cocktail at home. This is the ideal gin lovers gift this Christmas.
Experiment with a selection of seasonal garnishes, such as a sprig of holly, seasonal orange peel, spicy cinnamon and a sprinkle of cloves, or create something completely new and unique.
The Botanist retails at £34.99 (70cl) and £12.00 (20cl). Available in Nationwide premium retailers. To find out more about the giftset, please visit their website.
Pickering Gin Baubles (£30)
You may have seen that Gin filled baubles are bang on trend for 2017. Pickering’s led the charge on this trend and they have been creating gorgeous gin baubles since 2017. This year, you get your hands on six of their brightly coloured filled baubles, each one containing the brand’s signature gin. For £30, this is a memorable and delicious way to celebrate Christmas. Be careful though, this fantastic gin might just be a temptation too far!
Pickering’s Gin derives influence from an original Bombay recipe dating from 1947. This means there is a lot of history behind the brand’s gin, even if the brand itself is only 4 years old. Super smooth, this gin is handcrafted at Summerhall Distillery, the first exclusive gin distillery to be established in Edinburgh for over 150 years.
There are 9 beautiful botanicals in each edition of Pickering’s, including juniper, coriander, cardamom, angelica, fennel, anise, lemon, lime and cloves. This combination is classic and warming, ideal for the festive period.
Last year’s batch sold out in an astonishing 82 seconds, so we recommend pre-ordering now to ensure you get your hands on a pack this year.
The baubles can be ordered here.
Palmers London Dry Gin (£28)
A London Dry made with 7 botanicals from the Palmers family, owners of the esteemed Langley distillery. With six generations of history behind them and over 300 stock gin recipes on their books accounting for over 80% of the UK’s artisanal brands of Gins, there is a strong tradition to this brand.
Charmingly, the Langley Distillery houses 7 copper gin stills that are all named after family members. In fact, the oldest, the McKay, dates back to the mid-1800s.
The seven botanicals on show here are juniper, coriander, angelica, cassia, liquorice, orris and grapefruit. To enhance the final product, the botanicals are caringly warmed and steeped for 24 hours in 100% English wheat spirit. The process ensuring that the botanic oils are all releasing into this gorgeous London Dry.
70cl are available for £28 from Master of Malt.
Adnams The Little Box of Gin-dulgence (£29.99)
A beautiful trio of gins in a striking gift box – what more could you want? The box contains a 20cl bottle each of Adnams Copper House Dry Gin, Rising Sun Gin and First Rate Gin. Each gin offers a different gin experience, therefore making it a superb tasting selection for any connoisseur.
Adnams Copper House Dry Gin was voted the world’s best gin at the International Wine & Spirit Competition 2013. An aromatic gin featuring 6 botanicals, there are classic juniper notes with hints of orange and hisiscus. A real treat and a gin you will want to keep revisiting. Rising Sun Gin is one that features home grown Rye from Jonathan Adnams’s own farm, with a twist of matcha tea and lemongrass. Quite unique and quirky!
Available to purchase here.
Martin Miller’s Gin (£26)
Martin Miller’s Gin combines British craftsmanship, with the purest Icelandic water and global botanicals for a gin with crisp, clean flavours.
Martin Miller’s uses a single pot for distillation, Angela. Angela was made back in 1898 by John Dorey and sons, and is universally accepted as one of the ‘Rolls Royce’ of gin stills. However, pure Icelandic spring water is at the heart of this gin for an offering with superb clarity. Smooth and fresh on the palette, Martin Miller’s has been one of our favourites for a long time. For us the clarity and clean flavours of the gin really make it stand up strongly.
The gin has a strong citrus nose and taste, which leads into juniper and a mellow finish. Available at Waitrose, Sainsbury’s, Tesco’s, Morrisons, Ocado and others.
Beefeater 24 (£25.95 for 70cl)
Beefeater are a well-known name on the gin scene and they have been for years! However, this Christmas, they have released a new gin with a host of exotic new botanicals for an exciting new expression.
An elegant and sophisticated blend, Beefeater 24 draws on 12 ingredients, including Japanese Sencha Tea, Chinese green tea and then Seville orange peel, grapefruit peel, lemon peel, juniper, coriander seed, liquorice, angelica root, almond and orris root. The Sencha Tea, green tea and Seville orange peel are quite a welcome twist on gin we typically associate with the brand. It’s inventive, fun and well executed. The balance is bang on for us.
Beefeater 24 gets is name from the process in which it is made. It is called Beefeater 24 because the botanicals are steeped in the spirit for a full 24 hours. The result is a fragrant, aromatic gin with good sweetness. Plus, we believe that the bottle will look great in any Christmas drinks cabinet, thanks to a ruby red bottle.
Available from The Whisky Exchange for £25.95.
Copper Rivet Distillery Dockyard Gin
This gin has an eye-catching aesthetic and a family led story to match. If you are looking for something new, with heart and great flavours, this might just fit the bill.
Copper Rivet Distillery was set up by the Russell family, Bob and his sons Matthew and Stephen. With their first gin distilled in October 2016, the distillery is a new name on the scene, but a name we think you will be hearing a lot more about.
Born out of the dream of owning their own distillery in the Chatham area, Copper Rivet Distillery is crafted in Chatham’s Historic Dockyard in Kent by the Russell family themselves.
In fact, Copper Rivet distillery is one of only six UK distilleries to control the whole distillation process from grain to glass. Its water is filtered through chalk beds to let Copper Rivet’s yeast deliver its signature fruity esters during fermentation. Local farmers, the Burdens, have been contracted to grow and harvest the holy trinity of cereals which the distillery uses for its spirits – wheat, barley and rye. These are grown on the nearby Isle of Sheppey and by Canterbury. All three spirits are crafted in small batches of 900 bottles. This makes Copper Rivet Distillery charming for us and a great alternative to more commonly known names in the gin sphere.
Beautifully floral on the nose, but to taste the juniper hits first and then is followed with lemon for a zesty flourish. There is also a spiced finish for that extra twist. An exciting new gin with lots of promise and support from the local area; Copper Rivet Distillery may only be young, but the level of craft and care really does translate to the bottle. Plus, we feel the packaging and branding is memorable enough to draw in new, potential fans with ease.
You may also be interested to hear that their Masthouse Whiskies will be available from 2020, once they have matured in barrel. To find out more, please visit their website.
Gin Lane 1751 “Old Tom” style (from £19.99 for 70cl)
Along with the resurgence of gin, there has also been a wave of fans looking to indulge in the old, traditional styles of the spirit. This offering from Gin Lane 1751 taps into this emerging trend with an Old Tom style.
Historically, Old Tom has a slight sweetness that you wouldn’t find with London Dry, yet is balanced and not overly sweet. In this case, the gin is small batch gin created in the heart of London aims to embody the Old Tom style of the Victorian era and to encapsulate the traditional taste. Comprised of 8 botanicals (juniper, orris root, Seville oranges, angelica, Sicilian lemon, star anise, cassia bark and coriander), the gin is leant sweetness from a touch of refined sugar. Balanced beautifully, this is a great alternative to London Dry and perhaps one try treat yourself to this Christmas.
Why not try out the Gin Lane Old Tom 1751 Signature Serve: Martinez
Signature Serve: Martinez
40ml sweet vermouth
20ml Gin Lane Old Tom 1751
5ml maraschino liqueur
5ml orange curacao
1 dash Angostura bitters
Method: Add all the ingredients to a mixing glass. Add ice and stir until well chilled. Strain into a chilled Martini glass or Champagne coupe and garnish with a maraschino cherry.
Available from Aldi (Christmas period only, £19.99), Amazon (£26.94), Masters of Malt (£20.78) and The Drink Shop (£21.25) Read more here.
East London Liquor Company’s London Dry Gin (£21)
Another London Dry gin, this offering from East London Liquor Company is crafted in a distillery in Bow Wharf, London.
Made with 100% British Wheat, you also greeted by grapefruit, cubeb berries and Macedonian juniper berries, which are all welcome and intriguing botanicals. The cubeb berries in particular noticeable, yet not overbearing. Produced in small batches in the distilleries copper still, this is a gin we really enjoyed. For £21 this gin offers superb value, we would happily pay closer to £30 for a gin with such great balance – it’s beautiful showcase of London Dry gin created in right in the capital. Available from the distillery and masterofmalt.com, RRP £21.
Cucumber Gin (£35 for 70cl)
Delightfully light and refreshing, Cucumber Gin, by The English Drinks Company, is a unique gin you need to try this Christmas!
Launched only last Summer, Cucumber Gin has already won an International Wine and Spirit Competition (IWSC) Silver medal, and 2 coveted stars in the Guild of Fine Food’s hugely competitive “Great Taste Awards” 2017. Recently, they have also been awarded a Silver Medal from the Global Gin Masters awards as well! The response from the industry has been emphatic and rightly so!
Crafted from 100% British grain the cucumber is carefully distilled separately, before adding it back into the gin which achieves the unique and flawless flavour profile. The combination of juniper and cucumber is vibrant, refreshing and balanced exquisitely. The cucumber flavour really is a hit! They product 6,000 bottles per run, so grab one quick!
Best enjoyed neat over lots of ice, or with a splash of tonic and muddled fresh mint. It is also amazing in cocktails, and great to cook and cure with. It’s a versatile performer and a tasty one at that.
RRP £35.00 for 70cl bottle available nationwide in Majestic, Independent off licences and farm shops and delicatessens.
Ableforth’s Bathtub Gin (£31.25 from 31Dover)
A multi-award-winning gin, Bathtub Gin is hand produced in small batches using a traditional method known as cold compounding. This means that no distillation takes places and the gin is essentially infused and then filtered. The botanicals such as juniper, coriander, clove, and orange peel are left to infuse in the high-quality pot-distilled grain spirit. The result is a gin with vibrant botanical flavours with a memorable taste and unique flavour. To ramp up the uniqueness further, the bottle is presented in the form of an old apothecary medicine bottle, adorned with brown paper, string and sealed by wax.
The resulting spirit is a truly smooth and clean gin with fresh, bright flavours of the botanicals. It’s presented just like an old apothecary medicine bottle – Brown paper and string and wax sealed by hand. A unique packaging for a very unique product.
Ableforth’s Bathtub Gin has achieved global acclaim through the combination of the method of the gin’s creation and the traditional take on packaging. In fact, it was the winner of a Gold Outstanding Award at the 2015 International Wine & Spirit Competition and named the ‘World’s Best Compound Gin’ at the 2014 World Gin Awards. Now that is quite a list of accolades!
Available from 31Dover for £31.25 for 70cl.
Bulldog London Dry Gin
You may recognise Bulldog London Dry Gin from bars and restaurants up and down the country. Over the last couple of years the Bulldog brand has been taking the country by storm, and for very good reason. It works well as a standalone gin and it mixes perfectly too.
Bulldog London Dry Gin is made with some interesting botanicals, including dragon eye, lotus leaves and poppy, to name but a few. Distilled four times there is a delightful smoothness to the gin. The gin has gone down so well that it has had the highest rating ever received by a gin from Wine Enthusiast Magazine. However, we believe, the gin is superb for mixing and for cocktails. Possibly the best in this guide in this area.
Bulldog Red Snapper
2 parts BULLDOG Gin
0.5 parts Fresh Lemon Juice
Pinch of Celery Salt
4 parts Tomato Juice
4-6 Dashes Tabasco Sauce
4 Dashes Worcestershire Sauce
Pour all ingredients into Boston glass and shake for only 5 seconds before pouring into a sling glass full of cubed ice and garnish with a celery stick.
Available in most major retailers.
Disclosure: For this blog post we were able to gain access to a sample product or service.
To see our full Disclosure Policy please click here.