San Antonio’s Azar Distilling makes a series of gins including a “lemonade” and “limeade” variety. Seersucker Gin— or more specifically Seersucker Southern Style Gin— features an unusual and highly specific botanical. Clove Honey (not to be confused with clover honey) is the honey that comes from bees which pollinate the flowers of the clove tree. Presumably like other honeys from bees that limit themselves to a single plant, clove honey might be expected to have a touch of eugenol in addition to some of the honey like sweetness. The honey is a botanical and distilled; therefore, Seersucker Gin isn’t going to resemble the post distillation honey notes of gins like Barr Hill.
Light, sweet lemon and lime notes on the nose, with a cool slightly mentholic hint of ozone.
Azar Distilling’s Seersucker Gin is heavy with light notes of citrus. Let’s break down that doublespeak. There’s a lot of citrus aroma. It’s the dominant character of Seersucker Gin’s nose. But those citrus notes are bright and somewhat floral. Think more fresh-expressed-lemon-oil than cooked lemon rind; think more orange oil on the rim of a cocktail than rich, deep notes of orange rind or even Seville oranges. It’s not quite candy like, but it is somewhat sweet.
The background has some color as well. Seersucker Gin has a light mentholic glow hovering around the citrus (perhaps reminiscent of those Metromint Lemonmint flavored waters?). Either way, it’s quite a nice inviting nose.
On the palate, sweet citrus at first. Mild juniper from the mid-palate through to the finish. Mint grows on the back of the palate, leaving a lasting coolness and warmth,
Seersucker Gin’s initial palate entry is much like the nose: surprisingly bright citrus. And while the citrus sticks with the palate the whole way through, classic gin aficionados will find that juniper coming through mid-palate. It’s not buried. It’s right up in front with the citrus.
But I like the design decisions in the botanical blend by Azar Distilling, especially as the citrus elegantly segues into a cool minty back palate. Again, more strongly than before, it reminds me those aforementioned Metromint waters, or perhaps even a hint of lemon verbena. Hints of floral magnolia blossom and honeysuckle come in late here as well. Are those the Southern style notes?
Seersucker Gin has a moderate length cool and slightly citrusy finish. It’s nicely balanced and very light.
Azar Distilling’s base gin is aptly named. It is a good base gin. Seersucker works well in a range of cocktails ranging from Gin and Tonic to even the Martini. The lightness of the botanical blend will certainly win over those looking for a summer tipple.
Seersucker Gin is an ideal summer upgrade for drinkers of contemporary citrus forward gins like New Amsterdam. It manages to be light and somewhat sweetly citrus-forward without being fake. And Seersucker’s juniper and mint backend is impressively balanced.
While juniper-heads may turn their noses up at Seersucker Gin due to putting citrus up front, and others might be baffled by the category “Southern Style Gin.” Seersucker Gin is reasonably priced and accessible gateway gin for those who might be moving from citrus-flavored-vodkas to the world of gin— or maybe even for those who just want a light gin for gin and tonic season.
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My husband travels a lot—and always returns with a gin he thinks I might not have met. (With our ABC stores, here in Virginia, variety is limited.) While appreciating nearly any gin, I’ve taken an especial liking to this one! Everything about it is lightness...light-weight in the mouth, sunny-sweet citrus on the nose (please don’t compare it to New Amsterdam!)—and a gentle flick of mint, from the tail (...unusual). For my money, tonic submerges it; better to let it sing in a martini (with just a dash of Dolin Blanc vermouth and a twist), or to extend what’s already there with a citrus-and-ice cocktail (...it makes into a nice bramble). And yes, it’s convinced more than a couple vodka-martini friends that they might like to explore gin, after all. (Just wish we could find it locally 🙁