Vermont Spirits’ captures a little bit of North Vermont terroir in their Coppers Gin. The signature botanical being locally foraged juniper; but their overall spirit is about sourcing all their base ingredients locally. The team distills in a 150 gallon copper pot still, and their gin is built on a base of 100% grain.
Coppers Gin on the nose is creamy, citrusy, vanilla-ish, and spice-laden. Cardamom and vanilla pods combine with a note of orange and vanilla cream and warm coriander, angelica and cardamom underneath. It’s really quite intriguing, and I especially appreciate the almost buttery creaminess on the nose. It’s light on juniper however, and I wouldn’t be surprised if an expert taster might be uncertain about what the spirit is at first.
The palate is interesting as well, though it is definitely gin-like in character, with a good taste of pine-forward juniper. At first, there’s a warm spice, suggestive of ginger and Biscotti along with the aforementioned coriander and cardamom. The late-palate has a faint suggestion of flamed orange zest and celery; the finish is fairly long, though predominantly warm with faint piney notes and a gentle hint of grain like you often get in some of the more modern Genever-like/Holland style gins. But it’s not as overwhelming and at the fore in others. I like the balance and the way that grain note feels part of the botanical accord rather than an affect unto itself.
I decided for first taste to go Martini, as John over at Foodie Piligrim suggested in his review. In a 3:1 ratio with Dolin Dry Vermouth I found it to be even better than I remembered; I standby the recommendation from my book where I suggested an Alaska Cocktail. That’s where that delicious citrus note is beautifully highlighted by a touch of bitterness and sweetness.
Finally, I really liked Coppers Gin more in cocktails than I did in straight up mixed drinks. While it made an okay Gin and Tonic, I much preferred in the aforementioned Martini-like cocktails, or something a bit more spice-forward like the Negroni.
Bartenders will find Coppers Gin to be incredible accessible, especially to drinkers who don’t normally drink gin. It’s a bit challenging as a do-it-all gin, especially as the G&T is far too light on the juniper for it to work that way; however, there warmth and smoothness acquits it nicely as a top shelf Martini type gin. But do it 3:1 with a twist. I don’t think Olives go as well.
Coppers Gin is a nicely made contemporary style gin that has an interesting and flavorful profile. Fans of classic style gin will certainly find it to be a bit light on juniper; however, contemporary gin fans in search of something new and well done will likely find an intriguing dance partner for their next Martini.
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