Raise your hand if you are as excited about the abundance of craft gins from around the world adding new styles and flavours to a good old classic. These days all you need to be transported to faraway places is one of these bottles boasting native local botanicals – and a bit of creative thinking creating new cocktails.
In just few years, gin has moved on from that predominantly juniper-forward spirit to one of the most versatile and complex spirits possible. Though to be called gin, it still must contain juniper as the predominant flavour. However, this does not put any limit to the number and variety of botanicals used in addition of juniper – which can be anything from herbs to seeds, flowers, plants or spices, from any place in the world.
What initially started with adding citrus flavours, or locally grown herbs in addition to juniper several years ago, has blossomed into the most exotic and creative new flavour profiles from around the world.
Over here at the Carrots & Tigers home, it’s been gin o’clock on repeat this summer. Trying and tasting and mixing with gins from many different corners of the world, there’s been a number of awesome finds and the list of new favourites getting longer and longer.
My latest favourite boasts a combination of tropical flavours (floating my head with images of the dreamiest Caribbean beaches) yet is produced in the cradle of gin-making, the Scottish Lowlands.
About Eden Mill St. Andrews
Scotland’s first combined distillery and brewery, making gin, whisky, and beer, is nestled on the banks of the River Eden in Guardbridge near St. Andrews.
The site was once home to the Seggie Distillery, founded by the Haig family around 1810. After 50 years of operation, however the family decided to cease distilling and instead turned the site into a paper mill. It remained a successful business for more then 100 years, eventually changing hands in the late 1960s but later, in 2008 the new owner went into administration.
It took a couple of years before in 2012 a small craft brewery was opened on site which two years later also started to produce gin and whisky.
So far, it all sounds like the story of many new operations in the distilling business of late, with quite a good number of new micro-distilleries emerging around the world, and definitely in the historic areas of whisky and gin making across Scotland and Ireland.
Yet, Eden Mill is strongly connected to local St. Andrews University and together with the university is working on an ambitious project to become carbon neutral by 2024. This includes a new facility to be opened next year (2022), just ahead 150-year anniversary of St. Andrews Open Golf Championship taking place in July.
Some of the cornerstones of the new operation will be to power and heat the stills using energy generated by a biomass plant and field electricity. Solar panels will be installed on the roof of the distillery. Water for distillation of the whisky will come from the biomass and remaining water will transition back to the biomass and reused.
Still part of becoming more sustainable, earlier this year, the distillery has switched from its traditional ceramic bottles to glass bottles. The new bottle uses 18% less glass than other industry-standard bottles, are lighter and can be more easily recycled.
Design-wise, it’s been a beautiful switch too, with the elegant crystal glass bottles looking both classic and stylish at the same time.
The Eden Mill Gin range
The distillery produces a large range of different gin, grouped under different categories.
Including a collection of contemporary gins, the Distillers Choice range boasts limited bottles of gins distilled to the personal preference of the lead distillers at Eden Mill, including white and red-wine cask aged gins.
Gins made under the Heritage Gin range are inspired by local heritage, using locally sourced ingredients, including honeyberries from Cupar, sea buckthorn from the east coast and seaweed from Crail.
Meanwhile the Eden Mill Premium Gin range combines locally sourced botanicals with inspirations and botanicals sourced from around the world. Think of flavour profiles like tomato, chilli, and angelica (Red Snapper Gin), samphire, kombu, and sea salt (Neptune Gin) and several more.
Eden Mill Passion Fruit and Coconut Gin is part of this range. First introduced in 2019 and initially sold exclusively at the World Duty Free outlets but thankfully it has turned into a seasonal product and is now available on a larger scale.
If you love tropical flavours, this gin is made for you. Full of flavour, it’s dominated by notes of passion fruit and apricot bolstered by toasted coconut.
Two awesome gin cocktails using Eden Mill Passion Fruit and Coconut Gin
This elegant, tropical gin is perfect to be enjoyed simply poured over some ice or with a splash of premium tonic water as classic gin and tonic.
Yet it also makes a great base for some tropical cocktails.
Check out two of my favourites using the Passion Fruit and Coconut Gin below.
Eden Mill Passion Fruit Spritz
This refreshing cocktail comes as curtesy from Eden Mill distillery, and I will forever be grateful having captured their tweed this past April.
50 ml gin
150 ml pineapple juice
25 ml simple syrup
to up with prosecco
Add gin, pineapple juice and simple syrup to a glass filled with ice. Top up with prosecco.
Eden Mill Pina Colada Cocktail
It’s the mother of a tropical cocktail and believe it or not but substituting rum for gin you will end up with a heavenly twist of the classic Pina Colada.
50 ml gin
25 ml pineapple juice
75 ml coconut milk
10 ml lime juice
25 ml simple syrup
Pour all ingredients in a gin tumbler over ice. Garnish with a lime wedge.
Eden Mill distillery not just makes some incredible craft gins. The move towards a carbon neutral business operation and the opening of their new visitor centre planned for 2022, with a large range of different experiences, from tasting to learning about distillation, botanicals and more definitely puts Eden Mill firmly on my list of places to explore.
In the meantime, I will continue to enjoy a good Eden Mill Passion Fruit & Coconut gin and tonic or some innovative gin cocktails.