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Review

Spirit of London Gin

Distillery

Thames Distillers Ltd., Clapham (produced exclusively for Marks & Spencer Plc), London, England, UK.

Website

Marks and Spencer.

History

In 18834 Michael Marks set up a retail shop in Leeds where everything cost a penny. It couldn’t be any simpler and both his idea and hard work soon paid off. But it was when Michael went into partnership with Tom Spencer in 1894 that the company started to really take shape. It is built around the five key principles of Quality, Value, Service, Innovation and Trust. Today it is one of the UK's leading retailers, selling stylish, high quality, great value clothing and home products, as well as outstanding quality food and drink, responsibly sourced from around 2,000 suppliers globally.

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

Production

Produced in small batches.

The Gin is presented in a round, clear squat bottle with rounded shoulders. At the center of the bottle is a white label with black colored text and geometric design; perhaps most notable is the City of London skyline on the rear label, visible through the front of the bottle. A similar design and picture was subsequently used by C.O.L.D’s City of London Dry Gin.

This Gin is gluten free and suitable for vegetarians and vegans.

Category

Distilled Dry Gin.

Alcohol By Volume (ABV)

40% (80 Proof).

Price Range

$$$$. Only available in the UK, and specifically from Marks and Spencer, a leading national clothing and grocery chain store.

Botanicals

Unknown.

Name

Unknown, we can only assume this has been chosen due to London being viewed as the birthplace of (modern) Gin, thus it is the “Spirit of London”.

Tasting Notes

On the nose is very light citrus and juniper with little to readily identify this as Gin. On the palate this silky smooth spirit has a fresh citrus taste with drying juniper on the short close. A subtle, smooth and rounded Gin.

This is not like your usual Gin and certainly for Gin lovers it may be disappointing in that it does not have the expected “bite”. However, the rounded smoothness makes this very drinkable and many non-Gin drinkers will find this very easy to enjoy. It can be drunk neat although it may lack some distinction but is good in a Gin& Tonic; we suggest a slice of lemon garnish as the preferred citrus flavor to compliment this Gin. This Gin makes a very subtle Martini and we suggest a lemon twist for garnish instead of olives. All in all this makes a useful Gin for those wishing for a much lighter flavor profile, a true crossover spirit for Vodka drinkers.

Awards & Accolades

Bronze Medal, International Spirits Challenge, 2013.

Silver Medal, International Wine and Spirit Competition, 2012.



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