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Sipsmith reveals bartender-created gin

Suntory Global Spirits-owned Sipsmith has launched a limited edition gin, created in collaboration with the winner of its inaugural cocktail competition.

Sipsmith Dear Low Dykes Gin
Dear Low-Dykes Gin is inspired by Sam Wilkes-Green’s childhood home

Bartender Sam Wilkes-Green beat five other finalists to be named the winner of Sipsmith’s inaugural UK cocktail competition, Cygnus, last year.

Wilkes-Green’s winning serve, Dear Low Dykes, combined Sipsmith VJOP and Sipsmith Lemon Drizzle Gin with homemade apple and bay leaf cordial, clover honey, peppercorn distillate, and Crémant de Loire sparkling wine.

The serve pays homage to the ingredients and flavours reminiscent of Wilkes-Green’s upbringing in Low Dykes Barn, located in Cumbria, England.

For winning the competition, Wilkes-Green, of Liverpool bar Present Company, collaborated with Sipsmith’s distillers on the creation of a gin based on his cocktail recipe.

Together, they incorporated ingredients such as bay leaf, bee pollen, black, green, and pink peppercorns, as well as grapefruit and lemon peel, into the gin.

The resulting liquid carries an aroma of ‘warming spiciness complemented by bright citrus notes, leading into a palate of juniper, pepper spice, and herbaceous bay, with a finish of lingering sweetness and warmth’.

Joe Hornig, distillery and liquid innovations manager at Sipsmith, said: “Sam shared our vision for going to extraordinary lengths to distil gin of uncompromising quality.

“It was an honour to be able to collaborate with him on this extraordinary liquid, as he had a clear vision of what he wanted the final product to be. We managed to trial and share feedback on several different versions before landing on our ideal formula.

“It was important to us that the gin holds its own when used in a cocktail, which helped guide us during the development stage. I think we’ve managed to capture the essence of Sam’s winning cocktail and sense of place within the gin.”

Only 260 bottles of Dear Low-Dykes Gin will be available to buy via the Sipsmith website, Gerry’s Wines and Spirits in London, and Speciality Wholesale.

Bottled at 44% ABV, the gin is priced at £35 (US$44).

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