Chattermark Distillers’ Coastal Forest Gin is inspired by the local Massachussetts “new growth forests.” This means that there’s an unusual emphasis on tree based botanicals. For example, Birch grows widely in the region and owing to the trees’ high natural sap content, survivalists say “birch bark is typically a bit sweeter…than other edible types of tree bark.” Coastal Forest Gin also features locally foraged white pine needles.
The gin begins with Chattermark’s White Rye before adding the botanicals through a combination of maceration and vapor distillation.
Aroma: Hint of rye spirit on the nose with lots of herbs. Camphor and sage dominates with hints of chervil and lemon.
Flavor: Early, a hint of lemon zest, then a hearty mid-palate of resinous juniper giving off the impression of rosemary. The back half becomes a bit more coolly herbal with sage sitting atop indistinct, earthy, rooty notes.
There is some rye character still present, both texturally and flavorwise throughout the palate. Fans of rye vodkas and unaged ryes will certainly appreciate the way the base spirit works well alongside the botanicals. Though to be clear, it’s subtle and not the focus.
Coastal Forest Gin pairs nicely with citrus, especially lemon. Try it in a gin and lemonade or Tom Collins. A bit bracing, it’s non-traditional side is clearly on display in a Martini. Though the botanicals are strong enough to hold up in a Negroni it’s the herbal side that shines through most prominently, which can sometimes over emphasize the botanicals in the vermouth.