This month we’ve imported a gin all the way from Japan – 135º East, Hyogo Dry Gin. It has never been sold in Ireland before, but our quest for more exciting and exotic gins led us looking as far afield as Japan. We’ll continue to search far and wide for unusual and unique gins for you, but for now, let’s focus on what makes this one so unusual, the blend of London dry botanicals, coupled with local Japanese botanicals.
Let’s start with the name – the gin draws its name from the 135º meridian east which crosses Akashi City in the Hyogo region – the home of the Kaikyo distillery. Inspired by the Taisho period, this Hyogo style Gin plays on a time when eastern culture merged with western customs. This is reflected in the ingredients which enhance and complement each other. Traditional London Dry Gin botanicals mingle with Japanese botanicals – both crowned by a touch of sake. Something completely different!
Each botanical is sourced from local farmers or specialized vendors. You will be amazed by the delicate, yet powerful and bittersweet aroma that Yuzu brings to the blend. Next Sansho peppercorns whole, rather than powdered bring a wonderful genuine spice to the gin. Third is Shiso leaf which is a Japanese herb and it is part of the mint family. It brings a lovely freshness. These are all blended with London dry botanicals such as angelica, coriander and juniper.
We did try source you some Japanese tonic but there was literally none available in Europe given the last 18 months. Instead we tried several other tonics, and we felt that Schweppes Light Tonic from their Signature range lifted the fresh aroma’s and accentuated the peppercorn in the gin. We also include some Moneir dried citrus fruits which will work wonders for your gin and tonic. We love these guys. They are a small company based in Co Wicklow and their fruit is organic and freshly dried. Most of all, what they are doing is innovative and really adds a touch of class to your drink.
Lastly this month, we discovered Forest Feast. We think you’ll be delighted we did, and we have featured them in many of our WineOnline.ie Christmas hampers this year because these guys have the most beautiful products in vibrant coloured packaging. We choose their salted dark chocolate almonds and some slow roasted peanuts and cashews for you to gnaw your way through over a gin this month.
We hope you enjoy 135º East gin this month and we’d love you to tell us about it if you do.
Have a great month and thanks for your support as always.
Angelica, Coriander, Juniper, Sencha, Yuzu, Shiso Leap Ume, Sansho Pepper