Price: £25 / 700 mL
Distiller: The Northumberland Gin Co.
Origin: England, United Kingdom
Availability: UK and Online through Master of Malt
Rating: Classic gin drinkers will find that although you’ll detect some trappings of the contemporary style. Steam Punk manages to not lose the essential gin qualities, and it actually accomplishes it quite well. I think the amplified angelica notes are quite inviting, and the subtle ways that the floral/spice nuances that seem to come through on the palate are restrained and only serve to heighten the juniper-led quality. It’s not dead-on classic, no. But it’s certainly worth checking out if you’re looking for a contemporary take on classic gin that remains classic. [Rating:3.5/5]
Where out story left off, a Victorian dandy/scientist and distiller created an unctuous, vivacious liquid which was all the rage in late 19th century London. “Juniper, Cardamom and Citrus melting together in perfect harmony.” I can’t quite tell if the backstory is a bit tongue in cheek, an anachronism riddled back story to poke fun at the genre, or if this really is Sir Raleigh Holmes-Dunston’s 1892 creation, resurrected [most certainly by hand powered robots capable of passing a Turing test, held back merely by their crude source of power] and re-created. In any case, it boasts “seven peculiar botanicals from around the world for a distinctive taste.” [and here I thought that the word Peculiar in conjunction with gin might have been trademarked by the Edwardian marketing wunderkinds over at Hendrick’s ()]
Pleasantly spicy on the nose, cardamom and angelica with a solid juniper qua gin base to it. Quite classic, there’s some definite citrus in there as well and with bits of coriander as well. Despite the boast of “7 peculiar” I’m not getting much of anything out of the ordinary on here, I’m detecting a lot of traditional notes. Certainly, not a bad thing.
A very crisp and quite nice palate. First, there’s a hint of something a bit unusual on the first sip, perhaps a tinge of lavender? Citrus, with a mostly orange, leaning bitter orange towards the finish. A slight creamy texture to it as well, strong classic juniper backbone, and a heavier hit of coriander, though very clean and direct in its expression, perfectly melded with the vivid angelica notes. The finish is a bit sharp with a good deal of astringency, finishing in quite a classic way. I mean, it’s a really solid, bright, classic style gin. It does a lot of things well. When I contrast it with the evocative and in-your-face affront to tradition that the Corsair’s Steam Punk Gin (not reviewed on her yet, but its smoky, peppery, complex with a strong campfire/cookout vibe) this feels like the kind of gin that you don’t need to be looking for something unusual to enjoy.
And to be honest? at this price point, it’s a bargain for the level of quality too. Although I won’t bump up the rating based on expectation/price, I think it’s worth pointing out that if you find this at the listed price I found, it’s a good deal for what it does.
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