You’ve read that correctly. For the record, Australian Green Ant Gin actually contains ants. They’re floating in the bottle.
It’s not the only gin to feature an ant among its ingredients (check out Anty Gin for another example); however, this one uses the insect to marvellous and unexpected affect. The ants were a common “bush food.” Their larvae were eaten by Australian aboriginal peoples. Their nests were boiled in water and filtered. The resulting “Ant tea” was high in vitamin C. Tourists pick them up and lick their butts (if you do this yourself, be wary— they bite!),
Why? Their secretions have a beautiful lemon lime flavor that almost comes across as artificial. Extraordinarily bright and potent. If you have a bottle of Australian Green Ant Gin, you can pluck one from the bottle and lick its torso to taste the flavor in the raw.
That being said— the ant is the most extraordinary and notable thing about this gin. However, Australian Green Ant Gin features a handful of other unusual native botanicals including the finger lime, lemon myrtle the small purple fruits of the creeping vine Boobiala. The berries taste like turpentine (which tastes like juniper just a bit) and are among this gin’s botanicals.
Each botanical is individually vapor distilled and later blended to produce the gin.
Bright and very citrusy on the nose. Lots of oily lemon with hints of green lemon leaf and pineapple sage. There’s a terpey, piney undernote as well.
Sipped, there’s a pleasant warmth at first. Citrus notes build until the mid-palate. Eucalyptus and camphor notes give the gin a sage-like ethereal quality as the spirit fades. The peculiar citrus flavor of the ants themselves is strong throughout, especially on the finish.
That lemon/lime note is tenacious and it hangs on at the back of the palate.
Overall, it finishes rather smooth with a slight warmth.
Though visually the impact of a Martini with an ant in it is hard to beat— Australian Green Ant Gin is a surprisingly forgiving mixer.
It’s unusual citrus character shines and adds color to citrus-forward cocktails. The ant note brightens your Gimlet, even adding a lime Skittles note when paired with Rose’s Lime Juice. Further, it’s a solid gin and tonic gin as well.
Pairing with heavier ingredients, it can clash. I’d lean away from Negroni, Martinez, or other drinks of that ilk.
Overall, Australian Green Ant Gin
It’s an incredibly fun gin to have and it’s sure to be the centerpiece of any bar collection that has it.
But looks and fun aside, as a gin Australian Green Ant Gin is a bit light on the juniper and can come across as “one note.” Sure that one note is a lot of fun, but as a balanced gin it comes up a bit short.