Bloomsbury Lemon Gin

Lemon Gin ad, Ironwood, Michigan 1975
Lemon Gin ad, Ironwood, Michigan 1975

Price:  £20 / 700 mL
Proof: 90
(not verified, perhaps Hayman Distillers)
Origin: England
Availability: UK and Master of Malt. 
Rating: While it gets the job done: it’s a lemon flavored gin, the lemon flavor is completely un-integrated with the rest of the botanicals. It tastes like there was lemon flavoring added post-distillation rather than it having been distilled with the rest of the ingredients. The lemon is a little fake tasting, and the ethanol on the nose is a bit off-putting. That being said, it tastes like it would work well in mixed drinks your next party, and that it’s a good get-the-job-done gin. I advise fans of citrus-forward contemporary gins to look elsewhere to the veritable bounty of citrus-forward gins out there now, and perhaps skip past this one.  [Rating:2/5]

Paramount Lemon Gin, 1937
Paramount Lemon Gin, 1937

Flavored Gins! Remember when David a.k.a. Summer Fruit Cup blew the dust off that bottle of Gordon’s Lemon Gin? (of course you do, always choose the dusty one… – is that enough of a stretch to make a reference to Indiana Jones when referring to a piece titled Raiders of the lost cocktail cabinet…, okay nevermind back to the gin…)

Flavored Gins! Once rather fashionable. many of the big brands (like Gordon’s) had once had one out there. The style came into popularity especially after 1940 in the United States, so much so that many local/regional brands had their own lemon gin variants on the market.

lemon gin ad beckley, west virginia
Lemon Gin Ad, Beckley, West Virginia, 1950’s.

Flavored Gins! Lemon, orange, (and other more obscure ones like Mint) endured for a better part of the century, only falling out of fashion after the 70’s and became so unprofitable that even Gordon’s, perhaps the gold standard for the style discontinued their Lemon Gin after 1988. Lemon gin was regulated to the “once was” and “no-longer-cool.” That is until the Gin Renaissance, And with that we’ve seen a resurgence in gins featuring citrus prominently, and notably in this case, gins making a specific lemon/orange variant.

Flavored Gins! Bloomsbury has both and Orange and a Sloe variant available as well, and all are built off their primary grain-based Bloomsbury Gin.

Bloomsbury Lemon Gin Bottle PhotoImpressions

A bit of ethanol greets the nose at first, though it settles down with vanilla, juniper and lemon zests. The aromas are nice, though a bit of harshness is evident.

The palate is rather predictable. Juniper, a somewhat fake and acidic lemon taste is present as well, the finish has some creamy vanilla and grain hints, along with a fair amount of heat. The finish unveils some complexity on the palate, with angelica and dusty coriander. The finish is medium length, with a a hint of sourness and hay bringing things out. The spirit is rather thin overall, though its flavor is definitely neutral enough to let the flavors shine.

Overall, It gets the job done. It’s a lemon gin, and the lemon flavor is front and starring. My critique might be that with so many gins on the market, and many gins experimenting with bold and front/center citrus notes, it’s hard to recommend a cloying, somewhat fake tasting lemon one over others on the market. If you want something cheap and citrus flavored to fuel your next get together, this gin will do the job. Its inoffensive enough that it will check the box for gin drinkers while not putting off those who might not love it.

I personally prefer a gin to be citrus flavored because of a heavy botanical emphasis rather than with a flavor added afterwards. I just don’t think the lemon flavor is integrated with the rest of the palate, and for that it kind of sticks out like a sore thumb.

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Readers' Reviews

Last updated August 21st, 2015 by Aaron

One thought on “Bloomsbury Lemon Gin

  • August 21, 2015by David Schofield

    I think I last tasted this some 20 – 25 years ago in Spain, it was probably the only lemon flavored Gin available at the time, wow do I feel old! I really cannot recall it tasting artificial, however given we are more used to real botanical flavoring today, it would be interesting to revisit this – I suspect I’ll find it does taste artificial to my (hopefully) more developed palate!
    Thanks for this review it was particularly great for me as a trip down memory lane.
    Regards, David.

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