If you are wondering where exactly the Isle of Harris is, well, it’s in the Outer Hebrides and even though I’ve been to Scotland, I still had to Google the location. The distillery first opened in Fall of 2015 and although they are working on a single malt, the first product out the door is gin.
For a point of reference, my favorite gin now is Monkey 47. Going into the tasting of this gin my one question was, will Isle of Harris be better?
The gin contains nine botanicals: Sugar Kelp (highlight of the gin is picked by divers from a hidden underwater forest in their local sea-lochs), Juniper, Cassia Bark, Coriander Seed, Angelica Root, Bitter Orange Peel, Cubebs, Licorice Root and Orris Root.
The beautiful bottle ripples represent wind-blown seas. You can find a motto on the bottom of the bottle, Esse Quam Videri. It’s their founder’s family motto: “To be, Rather Than Seem To Be.”
Nose: citrus, juniper and light sweetness
Palate: fruit, juniper and grapefruit
Finish: light sweetness and black pepper
Cost: $60 (what I paid)
This gin reminded me of The Botanist Gin with the exception that the Isle of Harris gin does have a black pepper finish, which I rather liked because of how warming it felt.
My one concern with distilleries making gin or a white spirit their first product is that it makes me wonder whether the product is a good quality product or if they just wanted to get a product out the door to make money. I can tell you this much, this is a quality product. The botanicals used are great, but the outstanding notes are the Sugar Kelp and Black Pepper. The Sugar Kelp is rather beautiful, and the Black Pepper gives you a nice warm hug.
I know what you’re all thinking, $60 is steep considering all the other options out there. To that I’ll say, not every gin is made the same. I’ll pay extra for quality, and this is quality.
Although Monkey 47 remains my favorite gin, this one is high on my list. It’s a product they should be proud of and I can’t wait to see what else they come up with.
Note: The contents on my blog are solely my opinion. To me every palate is different! Although I may or may not like a product, I always recommend for people to try it and make up their own minds.