Top 10 UK craft gin brandsBy Amy Hopkins
The current boom in all things craft has never been more apparent than in the British gin market – here’s our countdown of the top 10 UK craft gin brands.
The craft section of the gin industry has seen extensive innovation in recent years – with increasingly more UK distillers looking to return to the country’s capital, the spirits historical home.
But while this may be so, some producers are choosing to handcraft their spirits in other parts of the UK, often reflecting a slice of that area’s own history.
The definition of craft gin is however itself a point of contention, with no clear definition. But the spirits industry seems to generally recognise gins which use hand-craftmanship, are created in small batches, and which appeal to their heritage, as craft products.
And as the premium gin market continues to gain pace across the world, with consumers seeking authenticity and history in their spirits, craft brands are carving a niche for themselves both in the on- and off-trade.
Click through the following pages to see our pick of the top 10 UK craft gin brands.
Distilled using organic botanicals including juniper, angelica, lime peel, bay laurel, cardamom, red raspberry leaf and London honey, Dodd’s Gin is the first product launched by The London Distillery Company, based in Battersea.
Bottled at 49.9% abv, Dodd’s Gin retails for £36.95.
One of the best-known UK craft gin brands, London-based Sipsmith has tapped into growing international interest in London craft gins by announcing plans to launch in the UK, Canada, and Australia over the next year.
To cope with increased demand from all three new markets, Sipsmith is preparing to move to a larger site in London where a third pot still and small experimental pot still will be installed. The brand has also recently launched a product to meet demand for higher abv gins, called V.J.O.P (Very Junipery Over Proof).
Bottled at 41.6% abv, Sipsmith’s standard London Dry Gin retails for £29.45.
The gin is produced in small batches using 12 organically sourced botanicals which are macerated with English grain spirit and then distilled separately in glassware under vacuum.
Bottled at 40% abv, Sacred Gin retails for £26.45.
It is distilled in the Vale of Leven, near Loch Lomond, using a special hybrid still designed in Germany, that is part pot still and part column still.
Bottled at 40% abv, Gilt retails for £29.50.
The gin is placed in a 20-litre glass jar with infusion bags containing fresh lemongrass, cardamom, coriander, cloves, cinnamon, star anise, fennel, lemon and lime for 18 hours, after which time it is hand-bottled.
Bottled at 40% abv, Butler’s Gin retails for £33.69.
The London dry gin is a blend of six botanicals, including: juniper, lemon peel, coriander seed, angelica root, elderflower and orris root.
Bottled at 40% abv, Darnley’s View retails for £24.17.
Boxer Gin is described as having a “zesty nose with lemon peel and hints of candied orange” with “tangy with notes of exotic spice and blossom” on the palate.
Bottled at 40% abv, Boxer Gin retails for £34.39.
City of London Dry Gin
It is made using botanicals including: juniper, coriander seed, angelica root, liquorice root and fresh oranges, lemons and pink grapefruit.
Bottled at 40% abv, City of London Dry Gin retails for £32.50.
Warner Edwards Harrington Dry Gin
It is based on barley spirit flavoured with 11 botanicals sourced from farms in Wales and England.
Bottled at 44% abv, Warner Edwards Harrington Dry Gin retails for £33.
SW4 London Dry Gin
It uses 12 traditional botanicals including: juniper, orris, angelica, and coriander, among others.
Bottled at 40% abv, SW4 London Dry Gin retails for £19.55.