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Review:

Mayfair Gin

Distillery

Mayfair Brands Ltd., Mayfair (made by Thames Distillers, Clapham), London, England, UK.

Website

Mayfair Brands.

History

Established by four business partners: to create luxury spirits, in prestigious packaging and thus capturing the essence of elegance. Their motto “Elegance is our attitude” is perfect in the summation of Mayfair Brands aim.

The four business partners have a wealth of knowledge, experience and ability. They are: Product Development Director Douglas Davidson with 10 years prior experience with Isle of Arran Whisky where he was Managing Director and finally retired as their Deputy Chairman; Managing Director Roger Hatfield with over 30 years experience in corporate financial management; Deputy Chairman Stephen Duffy with over 30 years experience in sales and marketing with the drinks industry; and Chairman Michael Peirce who is also currently Chairman of Isle of Arran Distillers.

Thames Distillers is run by Charles Maxwell who is the 8th generation of a family (founders of the Finsbury Distillery) who have been producing Gin since 1700 – making them the oldest unbroken lineage in Gin distillation.

Production

Mayfair we believe uses a 200-year old secret formula developed by Sir Robert Burnett, a noted pioneer in the world of gin making. We understand Mayfair uses a variety of the botanical angelica only found in specific remote areas of Turkey, which is said to give the Gin superior form.

Produced is small batches, it is made in a John Dore & Co. 500-Liter copper pot still called “Thumbelina”. We understand there are several (undisclosed) distillation processes with the resultant Gin filtered several times, but there is precious little information available regarding actualities.

The Gin is presented in a clear squat rectangular bottle with a medium sized dark green colored label with Mayfair clearly written in white, in the center. Underneath this, is a gold embossed image of the capital (top) of a Greek inspired Corinthian column, used repeatedly in Palladian architecture (see “Name” below for more information).

Category

London Dry Gin.

Alcohol By Volume (ABV)

43% (86 Proof) in the USA; 40% (80 Proof) in Europe.

Price Range

$$$. Not available in all states in the USA, try online at: Binny’s Beverage Depot., Laurenti Wines, Traino’s Wine & Spirits or Drink Up NY.

Botanicals

At least 5 botanicals are used, including: angelica root, coriander seed, juniper berries, orris powder and savoury.

Name

The Gin is named after the exclusive Mayfair district of the City of Westminster, in London. Renowned for it’s luxury and elegance there are numerous exclusive shops (Saville Row tailors), hotels (Claridge’s and The Dorchester), restaurants and clubs. Unsurprisingly it is one of the most expensive places to live in the world, with notable locations such as Grosvenor Square (the US embassy takes up the whole West side) and Berkeley Square. In some countries this Gin is marketed under the name of “Palladian” or “Palladian of Mayfair” Gin, connecting to the many examples of Palladian style architecture to be found in and around the Mayfair area.

Andrea Palladio was an Italian architect in Venice during the 16th Century (1508 – 1580). His neo-classical works are said to have had the most influence on western architecture in history. Many mimicked his style and in England this spanned the 17th and half of the 18th centuries, with the wealthy Lord Burlington and architect Inigo Jones (plus later architects such as William Kent and Christopher Wren) being strong proponents of the Palladian Style. His style uses examples from Roman and Greek architecture and this influence has extended across continents and many countries; in the US this includes The White House, many state capital buildings, numerous plantation houses, but the most closely followed example of his design in the US is the Hammond-Harwood House in Annapolis, Maryland. However, England is the most notably influenced with a plethora of buildings in the Palladian style and a whole host of them can be found in London (e.g. Whitehall, Banqueting House, Horse Guards, Burlington House, the Martitime Museum in Greenwich, The Royal Academy of Arts, Somerset House, Covent Garden etc…the list is monumental – pun intended!).

Tasting Notes

On the nose are clear woody juniper and light fruity spice notes. On the palate this softly smooth full-bodied oily spirit has strong earthy juniper with sweetening spice and some alcohol notes (we tried this at 43% ABV). On the close is dry juniper with sweet floral angelica notes in the long finish. This is a juniper forward Gin with some balanced roundness and hints of complexity to it.

While not a fully classic London Dry Gin due to the lightness in citrus, for traditional Gin lovers it should provide a slightly different but enjoyable slant. We suspect this Gin has several other undisclosed botanicals, which may include a little lime, and despite the small number they present an interesting flavor ensemble. This can be drunk neat but is perhaps better utilised, due to its general versatility, in Gin based mixed drinks. In a Gin & Tonic there is a crispness to compliment the bitterness in a quality Tonic water, a citrus garnish works well but you might like to try a slice of apple instead. In a Martini it presents a likeable cool even drink suitable for more casual Gin drinkers. Traditional Gin drinkers may find the Martini a little lacking in character due to the lower impact of herbal botanicals on the palate but should be pleased by the level of juniper.

Awards & Accolades

Gold Medal, Gin Masters, 2013.

Best in Show, Best White Spirit & Double Gold Medal, Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America, 2013.

Read

Andrea Palladio's magnum opus "I Quattro Libri dell'Architettura" or "Four Books of Architecture" has been translated into many languages due to it's popularity. Discover for yourself his compendium of ancient art and architecture that inspired him and others since to create great structures. Grab a glass of your favorite tipple using this Gin while pursuing this masterpiece.



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