The Botanist Gin from Islay-Gorgeous, Untamed Wildness by the Sip

March 30, 2015

Do they make gin in Scotland?  Yes, certainly they do.  I've tasted quite a few of them, and I'd like to report to you that like the people of this country, their gin is gorgeous indeed. 

I'm impressed by the botanical approach, as opposed to the London Dry approach to gin.  You see, most gin is void of flavor- and of course when something is void of flavor, it can be deadly in the wrong hands.

Thus the factor of what gin did to you in the past.  Since I try to live in the present tense, I'm concerned with the task at hand.  And that task is to share with you something that I'm very passionate about.

That is a certain gin from Scotland named the Botanist. 

Islay is an island that has a very specific terroir.  There is flavor in the water of salt, brackish seaweed and freshly cut meadow grasses. The fog, laden with life giving nutrients hangs heavily over the 22 botanicals, hand foraged for each batch.  This fog coats the herbs and gives them a salty profile.  I love how this gin labels the botanicals right on the bottle, RIGHT ON THE GLASS!  Embossed into the glass are all twenty-two botanicals written Latin, makes me wish I had taken Latin in Prep school!

The bottle is handsome and thought provoking.  Narrow and cylinder shaped with a synthetic cork finish, this bottle speaks from luxury.  The Botanist offers 46% by volume heat for quite a refreshing entree into the springtime.  I for one miss gin and tonics during the winter months, mostly because the gin that is served in your typical G&T is missing most everything!

The Botanist on the other hand is sophisticated gin, worthy of my mention because it is so unique in the terroir.  According to the label, they use nine classic gin ingredients along with the twenty-two herbs and flowers that make up the flavor profile.

Nose:  Chamomile flowers, peach blossoms, salt dripped fog, crushed stones from the quarry, sea foam

Mouth: Lemon Curd, Leather, Thai Spices, Cinnamon, Japanese Seaweed, Brackish-lemon tinged water

Finish: Evolutionary, Candid, Creamy, Robust, Memorable

Cocktail Applications: 

Gin and Tonic - gardarned it, no corn syrup tonic here!

Gin and Juice- always freshly squeezed

Gin and Grilled Blood Orange juice- says it all

Gin and Angostura- they call it a pink gin.  I call it a great secret....

Gin and air... Air you say?  Yes.  This gin can be served with nothing more than air as a mixer. 

The Botanist and Fruitations Tangerine... now that is a combination I can wrap my fingers around!

2 oz. The Botanist Gin

3 oz. Fruitations Tangerine Soda and Cocktail Syrup

6 oz. Seltzer Water

2-3 drops Bitter Truth Jerry Thomas Bitters

Lemon twist

To a pint glass, fill 3/4 with good ice and then add The Botanist Gin

Add the Fruitations Syrup

Top with the Seltzer Water

Dot with the Jerry Thomas Bitters

Twist the lemon zest over the top of the glass and serve!


My third book, Bitters and Shrub Syrup Cocktail is out in May!  I created a number *75* brand new ways to make shrubs, gastriques, mocktails and food recipes using sugar, fruit, vegetables and many different kinds of vinegar.


available in pre-sell right now!