Contains an item sent for review
The name “Mermaid Gin” was repeated a few times when I asked recently what the next gin in my collection should be. To be honest I kicked myself for not thinking of it myself as I had actually spent an afternoon with one of the co-founders a few years ago and had learned all about the gin and its origins on the Isle of Wight whilst on board a gin cruise on the Solent. I had been meaning to buy a bottle ever since that cruise since it was not only a gin I really liked, but made here in Hampshire so is one of my most local ones.
What I remember learning on that cruise was that one of the botanicals, the rock samphire, is foraged from the island’s cliffs not far from the Isle of Wight distillery, but what I didn’t know is that there is now a pink version made with local Arreton Valley strawberries. The strawberries are steeped in distillery’s signature gin for four days before half is removed to be distilled and eventually added back to the remaining infusion. It is less sweet than many other pink gins I have tried, and because the strawberries were steeped for four days it gives the pink gin an intensely aromatic strawberry flavour.
Both of them are extraordinary gins and the pink one will make the perfect summer long drink made with Fever-Tree elderflower tonic to pick up on the elderflower used in the mix of botanicals. Regular readers will know that I drink my gin with lemonade, or if its a rhubarb gin then with ginger ale. These are both fabulous with lemonade and I will certainly be recommending the signature gin when people ask me for a gin that they may like “because I dont really like gin”. I always say that is because they haven’t found the right gin yet (or is more than likely because they don’t like tonic), and this could be the one that wins them over.
I once read a quote from Helen at Knackered Mother saying that you should pair fish with wines made near the coast, and I am thinking the same might true for gin. After all, if it works for wine it would surely work for gin, wouldn’t it? These would both be fantastic with a seafood supper.
The bottle itself is plastic free (even the seal around the top is plant based, the cork is sustainably sourced and the stopper is wooden) so if you like to drink sustainably (as well as responsibly) then these are the gins you need in your collection.
When I last saw the bottles of Mermaid Gin I thought it was lovely but it didn’t really stand out. It was very similar to many others and if I had seen it on a shelf in a shop I am not sure it would have tempted me to pick it ahead of its neighbours. Now it has been rebranded with a tactile downward spiral to resemble scales on a mermaid’s tail it is a must for any gin collection.
Now if you will excuse me, I am off to test the theory that this would work really well with fish by making a fish finger sandwich for lunch. I will report back!
You can buy both varieties of Mermaid Gin on Masters of Malt for £37.50 a bottle