Launched towards the end of last year, Porter’s Orchard Gin is the latest expression to join the -Scottish distillery’s portfolio. Paying homage to great-tasting French wines – specifically Blanc de Blanc Champagne, the gin is distilled using a modern cold distilling process.
With a passion for creating better drinks, bar industry experts Alex Lawrence, Ben Iravani, and Josh Rennie launched Porter’s Gin in the basement of their Aberdeen bar. The brand has since become renowned as one of the UK’s most innovative micro-distilleries, with the team intent on using modern methods to produce their spirits, ultimately extracting more refined flavours while adhering to traditional distillery practices.
Through consultation with scientists from the University of Aberdeen, the team built a vacuum still capable of distilling at much lower temperatures, enabling somewhat unusual ingredients to be used, without the heat damaging delicate botanicals, as would be the case with pot-distilling. The vacuum still distils at temperatures below atmospheric boiling points, and by attaching a pump to create a vacuum, the pressure is lowered along with the temperature to achieve liquid boiling.
Inspired by a love of fine wine, the new Porter’s Orchard Gin was created as a new expression for a gin that’s never been developed before. To imitate the Champagne’s Chardonnay grape and its intense fruitiness, green apples and pears are cold-distilled into the gin’s classic juniper base. To bring balance, the team also uses a soybean distillate, which adds sophistication to the final product.
On pour, Porter’s Orchard Gin has a golden complexion from the use of red apple extract, while juniper and apple dominate on the nose with its fairly vinous aroma. Champagne flavour is replicated well on the palate, joined by further notes of butter, biscuits, some nuttiness imparted by the soybean distillate, and piney juniper that lingers on the smooth, peppery finish. Good in a gin and tonic, great on its own, perfect in a French 75.
Porter’s Orchard Gin is available from the Porter’s Gin website.