Discover the best botanicals to prepare gin
Below you can see just some of the natural botanicals we use in our products, to enhance your gin experience and produce unique flavours in ever bottle
Juniper Berries are the main essential ingredient in gin production and is a must have. There is no botanical more deserving than juniper berries; without them, you’re really not making gin but rather just flavoured vodka. They make up over half the botanicals in any given gin.
Commonly found in Tuscany in Italy, as well as Macedonia near Greece, the juniper plant is actually a relative of the spruce or fir trees that people use as Christmas trees, a relationship that’s borne out by the scents and flavours of pine, lavender, and camphor. The true value in juniper isn’t actually in the flesh of the fruit themselves (which aren’t even really berries, but are little fleshy pine cones), but in the essential oils found in the seeds, which give gin its most recognizable flavours and aromas. Juniper berries have a fragrant and flowery bouquet, with aromatic, bittersweet, and pine flavours.
The second most important botanical used in gin are coriander seeds. Found in regions as disparate as Morocco and Bulgaria, coriander seeds come from a plant that fans of Indian food might recognize better as cilantro. In gin coriander imparts a similar profile of tastes and aromas to those found in Indian cuisine: notes of citrus peel, ginger, and sage are all found within the essential oils of the seed, as well as notes of pine and camphor similar to juniper berries. If you’re a fan of curry, keep those in the back of your mind next time you have some gin, and see all of the flavour connections you can make!
Native to southern India, but also cultivated in Guatemala, Indo China and Tanzania, cardamom is a unique spice, as essential to tea in India and to sausages in the Western world. The seeds come from a plant belonging to the ginger family, and are contained in small pods around the size of a cranberry.
Cardamom has a pungent and identifiable aroma in spice form, but once it’s been distilled it becomes very green, like a blanket of grass. There is a definite piquancy on the nose as well, and to taste it’s identifiable only as itself – a slightly perfumed flavour, sweet at the fore with a fiery finish. Green cardamom seeds lend an additional eucalyptol flavour to gins, while black cardamom add a more smoky finish
Cinnamon spice comes from the bark of a tree native to Southeast Asia but today is grown in Sri Lanka. As a botanical it lends a complex base note and a certain feeling of familiarity. It’s hot and spicy smell conjures up images of exotic markets and far-flung destinations, but it has an earthy tone and a sweet finish, reminiscent of liquorice. Typically, the flavour is more noticeable towards the finish when tasting gin, as opposed to on the aroma.
Liquorice root from Sri Lanka gives deep warm and sweet flavours, whilst also neutralising any bitterness from the other botanicals.
Orris Root Powder
Orris root is the root of the Iris flower. It adds delicate floral notes and binds the other botanicals together, and ours comes from Hungary.