Greenall’s Blueberry Gin shows that you can do “pink gin” without being pink. Rather than using strawberries, Greenall’s features natural flavors and blueberries in Greenall’s flagship London Dry Gin. It is pleasantly flavored with no additional sweetening or added sugar. So different flavor, different color, but fundamentally part of the “berry flavored gin” movement.
The color is added post distillation. It is translucent purplish blue that is quite attractive when combined with soda or tonic.
While Greenall’s Blueberry Gin is available in Europe at 37.5% ABV, this review is of the stateside version that comes in at a comparably robust 40% ABV.
Nose: Sweet blueberry jam sits atop a slight tinge of ethanol. No other gin character coming through. On nose alone, you might mistake it for a flavored vodka.
Taste: Blueberries and sweet apple juice notes early. Mid-palate gin character comes through. Mild notes of juniper accompanied by baking spice and lemon zest. The finish has a bit of dryness to add complexity, but not balance, to the lingering note of dried blueberries and strawberry jam.
Similar to other pink and flavored gins— Greenall’s Blueberry Gin is made for simple mixing. It works well in that application. In a gin and tonic it is simple, it is bright, it’s summery and refreshing. It even leaves room for a bit of lemon. I also recommend pairing it with bitter lemon or just soda water.
Where it is ultimately less successful is outside of those bounds.
In a Negroni the flavors clash and it tastes off. Paired with bitter savory complements such as dry vermouth in a Martini results in a similar affect. Though a lemon twist over Greenall’s Blueberry Gin served Churchill Martini style works surprisingly well.
Avoid pairing with amaro, wines, or savory, botanically complex ingredients.
Overall, Greenall’s Blueberry Gin
It’s easy to pan stuff like this and call it a day. I may not be the target market for Greenall’s Blueberry Gin, but it’s easy to see why it would it works well within its niche.
If you are looking for a flavored gin to mix with soda or tonic water, Greenall’s has done a good job. I love the lack of sweetness and the way it emphasizes the natural perceived sweetness of the blueberry flavor. I appreciate that while the nose is a bit singular, the palate makes it clear: there is a gin underneath the blueberry.
The blueberry and berry notes throughout the palate at times read as a bit artificial; however, overall, this gin is mostly a success in terms of the market it was looking to address. I strongly prefer it to some of the other pink gins out there.
Recommended in its category.