Bruichladdich, renowned for their single malts, has distilled The Botanist, a gin with true island pedigree. It is flavoured by an unprecedented total of 31 botanicals, 22 of which (including juniper) are native to the Hebridean island.
An absurdly slow ‘simmer-distillation’, three times longer than usual, on a unique “Lomond” still known affectionately as Ugly Betty, has produced a full textured and floral flavour profile for this decidedly dry gin.
An Islay ‘gin’ may not be that novel: clandestine Hebridean distillers of old also used hillside aromatic plants such as bog myrtle and juniper to improve the taste of poorly distilled, Illicit usquebaugh – the Gaelic for ‘water of life’.
Usquebaugh, the original whisky, was a clear spirit and probably tasted more like gin than the single malt whisky we know today.
2,500 cases (6/1) of The Botanist, bottled on Islay at 46% with Islay spring water, have been released for sale at at £25.95 per 70cl bottle. Available from www.laddieshop.com