Our Gin's New Journeys

From Tarbert to Times Square, Stornoway to Sydney, Queensland to the Costa Blanca…bottles of our Isle of Harris Gin have been wending their way around the world to be enjoyed by customers near and far. We’ve been delighted by the reaction to our first spirit-making endeavours, not just the enthusiasm for the spirit itself, which has garnered much applause and plaudits, but also for the tactile glass and cork bottle around it which seems to have captured not just a little of our island’s beauty but also the adulation of those who take possession of one.

One surprising outcome of all this positivity has been the sharing of photographs and stories as boxes are unwrapped and our gin finally resides in the hands of its new owners. We’ve enjoyed experiencing, albeit virtually, first tastes and moments of unwinding as inaugural measures are poured and fresh tonic splashes added to bring a little taste of Harris into homes far and wide. Alongside this, we’ve also had a lot of questions and asking for suggestions about how best to enjoy our new gin, how best to serve it, what to look for in terms of flavours as it is enjoyed and so on.


So we thought we’d help things along with the latest feedback from our Nosing Panel leader Gordon Steele who has, along with a select group of local men and women, been helping to shape and ensure every batch of our gin meets the highest standard before being bottled and shipped from our shores. We caught up with him to discuss his thoughts on profiles, palate and finish….

“With the Dottach Gin Still now being run in and tweaks to the recipe being made, the character of Isle of Harris Gin has developed and improved. This has resulted in more complexity, giving a gin that expresses the Isle of Harris Gin character of freshness with well developed citrus, floral and green herb notes.”

Going on to describe the ‘nose’ of the gin, Gordon tells us that in the glass we should be able to smell an array of interesting flavours. There is, he said…

“…a well-defined juniper note with pine needles, immediately followed by the fresh citrus notes of bitter orange, lime and grapefruit. The gin develops a complex floral note of rose and wallflowers with crushed green herbs, coriander and gooseberry all underpinned by mixed spice. The sugar kelp adds to the complexity and richness and gives a dry maritime note.”

Next there is the taste on the palate when the gin is imbibed on its own. He describes the flavours in the mouth as…

“Refreshing, with bitter juniper balanced with fresh fruit and cut herbs. A good balance between the bitter juniper and pine with the sweet fruit flavours of mango, grapefruit and orange. A green herb flavour has developed as well as crushed coriander. 

And finally, the finish, those elusive moments after drinking…

“The finish is long with a dry flinty taste reminiscent of the sea.”

Of course every palate and nose is unique and you may well have a very different experience to that of Gordon and our Nosing Panel. We would love to hear your own tasting notes to compare.

Shortly we will return with some thoughts on how best to enjoy your Isle of Harris gin. Meantime hope this all helps with your own journey into our gin, we have a long way to go ourselves, always striving to produce the best spirit we can and looking to find new and better ways to share our products with the world. It’s been an auspicious start however and once again we express our thanks to all who have joined with us so readily at this early stage of our work. To you and those like you we raise a glass to enjoying many more of these new journeys together.


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