James Bay Distillers‘ Lochside Lochside Summer Gin No. 5 is a marriage of their distilled dry gin and a post-distillation infusion of several kinds of citrus. The zests of tangerine, mandarin, orange and kumquat are added. An additional floral note comes from the orange blossom in that final maceration.
Designed for “sipping neat,” Lochside Summer Gin No. 5 is part of an emerging trend for distillers to design gins for contexts outside of cocktails.
Color: Clear. If there’s any trace of color from the maceration, it’s been skillfully reduced to the point of clarity.
Aroma: Slight notes of green juniper, and coriander accompany a largely citrus-forward nose. Notes of bitter orange marmalade and bright orange oil. I like the slight classic style gin aroma that balanced the citrus.
Flavor: Vivid with luscious, deep citrus flavor. Lochside Summer Gin No. 5. Orange dominates early. But the heart of this gin comes through mid-palate. Coriander and baking spice slides into notes of gentle cinnamon bark, bitter orange zest. Neroli and orange blossom come on late adding a nice brightness.
Finish: Long and light. Gentle hints of spice and orange blossom.
Lochside Summer Gin No. 5 is excellent sipped neat or on the rocks. Owing to its lower ABV (40%) I think it works best simply neat, to appreciate the wide range of citrus.
Mixed, this gin makes a superb martini. I think a garnish of an olive added a pleasant herbal counterpoint, allowing its citrus to shine.
In a Negroni, the citrus still comes through. The flavor is strong enough to stand up to mixing.
I recommend trying Lochside Summer Gin No. 5 in a Last Word or Corpse Reviver #2.
Overall, Lochside Summer Gin No. 5
If you like New Amsterdam Gin, James Bay Distiller’s latest offering is a worthy upgrade. It emphasizes citrus just as front and center, but overall has a better mouth feel and more natural flavor profile.
If you like citrus-forward contemporary style gins, you’ll love Lochside Summer Gin No. 5. While a bit slight in juniper— fans of classic gin may find it too slight— there’s enough juniper here to be recognizable as a gin. However, citrus is the star here.
Highly recommended in its category.