Rock Rose GinFriday, September 11, 2015
You know it's going to be a good day when you receive gin in the post.
The gin in question is Rock Rose Gin that hails from the Dunnet Bay Distillery, Caithness, and when I was asked if I wanted to try a sample the answer was a very definite 'hell yes! (please - manners cost nothing)'
It's beautifully branded and comes with a charming story.
The distillery is run by husband and wife team, Martin and Claire Murray, overseen by distillery dog George (who likes to sleep a lot), and with help from Elizabeth - their bespoke pot still - with traditional handmade copper head and a botanical vapour basket.
Small batches of 500 litres are distilled at a time, meaning the gin is made with great care to achieve the very best results, and when ready it's decanted into ceramic bottles that are then hand waxed and signed by the distiller.
I was sent a lovely package with everything I needed to make myself a well earned G&T. The serving suggestion was with lots of ice, Fever Tree tonic and a sprig of toasted rosemary.
What goes into the gin to give it it's taste is botanical Rhodiola rosea (hence the name Rock Rose) among other local and traditional botanicals - juniper (obviously), sea buckthorn, rowan berries and watermint - all foraged sustainably by hand from the Caithness countryside.
What can I say? As someone who has drunk (ahem) a lot of gin, this one is crisp and refreshing, and pretty darn good! The taste intensifies as the 'water level' goes down (which didn't take long) without a hint of dryness, and the second glass was equally as good.
It's the botanicals that give Rock Rose it's unique taste, but as these depend on the climes, each year sees a new vintage, slightly different from the last, but always retaining the trademark Rock Rose taste.
It's definitely worth a try now, and again next year.
If you fancy a try it has just launched at Fortnum & Mason and Harvey Nichols and is also available to buy on their website.
Should I be concerned that I'm contemplating a trip based entirely on my desire to visit a distillery? Either way the idea is there and forming.
(Day 13 of blogging everyday for 40 days)
Thank you to Dunnet Bay Distilleries for sending me this delicious sample. My opinions, my love of gin, and any daydreams of visiting Dunnet Bay are entirely my own.