Savory and herbal gins seem to be having something of a moment in 2019 and 2020. Just a few minutes North of Philadelphia, Norristown, PA based Five Saints Distilling pays tribute to the region’s Italian roots with their Five Saints Savory Tuscan Style Gin.
Though not all the botanicals are disclosed, the words “Tuscan Style” may offer somer hints. Tuscan Spice Blend is a common mixture in regional kitchens and consists more or less of oregano, basil, rosemary, bell peppers, black pepper and fennel. We know that rosemary is among the botanicals in Five Saints Savory Tuscan Style Gin. Hmmm…
The nose beings in an herbal fugue: fresh picked oregano complements a vanilla-tinged blend of fennel and mint.
Five Saints Savory Tuscan Style Gin amplifies that vanilla, fennel and mint flavor profile which is present throughout the palate. While that is the most distinctive note, other herbs are present as well. Mid-palate I get a slight licorice flavor suggestive of tarragon, lemon verbena and mentholic basil. Hints of cubeb and black pepper come through towards the finish.
Mildly warm, the finish is rather long with a mild trigeminal coolness.
You can pick out the juniper when you sip Five Saints Savory Tuscan Style Gin neat— but it’s the kind of thing you need to look for.
Despite being a savory gin, some of the fennel, anise, vanilla and mint notes lend itself nicely to ingredients that may seem a bit more dessert-like. Try it in the 20th Century. This Tuscan Style Gin complements creme de cacao beautifully— almost so much that when you go back to sip it neat you might begin to pick out notes that suggest to you chocolate.
It also makes for a delightfully herbal gin and tonic, especially paired with a lighter, less bitter tonic water. I think it almost works better with bitter lemon or lemonade.
Overall, Five Saints Savory Tuscan Style Gin
Fans of herbal gins will enjoy this gin. Some will find it a bit light on the juniper. While true, this is a good contemporary style gin with a unique perspective.
I recommend trying before you buy, but in the right home bars, Five Saints Savory Tuscan Style Gin has potential to be a really fun gin.