April’s Gin Box
Citadelle Gin De France
The most award decorated gin in the world! Citadelle has won 69 medals, 32 of which are gold!
Distilled by Maison Ferrand in the South West of France, in an area best known for its cognac.
This month’s gin has been distilled since 1995, in a Chateau that dates back to 1702!
Citadelle, owned by the Cognac house Maison Ferrand, harnesses the concept of terroir to help define its gin.
As the principal botanical, they decided to grow their own juniper in front of the Chateau de Bonbonnet to make sure it took on the unique flavours and characteristics specific to the area.
The resulting drink is elegant and refined (what else would you expect from the French?) with definite hints of the hyper-local juniper, along with fresh flowers and a finish of liquorice and fennel.
The taste begins quietly until the aromatics re-enter the nose. The middle begins with fresh bright juniper, turning more crisp and bold. The finish is what sets Citadelle Gin apart from its peers: really bright, a touch sweet and strongly aromatic. This would have been way out there back in 1995. Nowadays we take for granted that a gin can go this direction. But this would have been really unlike nearly anything on an English or American gin shelf at the time.
Citadelle Gin and Bombay Sapphire are probably on the short list of those that helped bring gin out of its late 80’s dark ages. It’s fantastic in classic cocktails – but perhaps the best recommendation we’ve come across, is to keep this so simple, with just tonic, and lemon peel.
We’ve included a lemon and Fever Tree tonic for a clean crisp serve. Yes we included a lemon in last month’s box, but only because both gins demand it! Lastly a few snacks for you – Lentil Chips from Eat Real (which we absolutely love) and some stuffed Mediterranean olives.
Enjoy when you’re sipping on an ice cool Citadelle and tonic.
Almond, Angelica, Cardamom, Cassia, Cinnamon, Coriander, Cubeb Pepper, Cumin, Fennel, Grains of Paradise, Juniper, Lemon, Nutmeg, Orange, Orris Root, Star Anise, Violet.
On the nose, hints of violet, sweet orange, coriander and floral brightness. Leans slightly citrus, but there’s another side here as well, with hints of a spicy/floral deeper notes: nutmeg, cinnamon and cardamom. Nice and contemporary in character.
THE PERFECT G&T
Garnished simply with a fresh lemon peel and voilà, you’re set. The size and shape of the peel -straight or twisted, large or small -does not matter as long as it’s fresh. Mix Citadelle and a high quality tonic water and you have crafted the perfect drink.
Beautiful in its simplicity, follow these steps to make your own Citadelle & Tonic. We prefer a 3:1 ratio of tonic to gin, but feel free to adapt to your liking:
- Chill a large balloon glass
- Fill the glass with large, clear ice cubes to the top
- Add 1 part Citadelle Gin
- Take great care to choose a ripe, unblemished lemon
- Cut a peel -and dare to be creative in its cut!
- Add 3 parts tonic water
- Express the peel on top of the glass and around the rim and place it gently into your Citadelle & Tonic.