My other half (who is also responsible for any good photography you might find on this site) was at a gin tasting late last year and came back raving about one in particular: Neroli gin, by That Boutique-y Gin Company. With characteristic tardiness, I grabbed a bottle for her as a late Valentine gift, and then felt I had no choice but to try it myself. For research purposes.
Flavoured, as the name suggests, with oils obtained from the blossoms of bitter orange trees, it has a huge waft of orange blossom on the nose, with a spicy undertone. A small sip of the neat spirit is certainly memorable, as the blossom is utterly dominant. Frankly, it’s as much perfume as drink when taken neat. The underlying spirit is probably great, and other botanicals leaning towards the spicy in a pleasing way, but this is not the way to discover them.
So, how about a G&T? I’ve leant towards using a tonic syrup recently, as it seems less wasteful than flat tonic lingering in litre bottles, or using dinky single-serve cans. The one I’ve easiest access to is BTW (Bermondsey Tonic Water), which does the job well, though the colour is slightly disconcertingly yellow for those of us raised on Schweppes.
I’ve loaded up the glass with ice and, in deference to the “Neroli” part of “Neroli Gin”, two slices of orange. In go a large measure of gin, a small measure of tonic syrup and a long pour of soda water. Trying it now, it’s still like drinking perfume, but in a charming summer lawn long drink way. The other half is very happy with it though, so job done.
I can see this make for a very aromatic Tom Collins or Rickey, but right now I’m intrigued to see how it goes in a Negroni, so a post on that to follow soon…
- 50ml Neroli Gin
- 25ml BTW Syrup
- 90ml fizzy water
- Good ice
- 2 slices orange
Ice and slices in a tumbler or highball glass, then gin and syrup, pour over fizzy water and stir gently.