GINVENT: 4th – 6th December 2018


Husk Distillers Ink Gin and Citrus Yorkshire Tonic

Initially what strikes you about this gin is it’s dark blue colour.  When I first heard about this I hadn’t seen anything like it.  My sister told me about it as her friend had seen it while living in Australia and wondered if I wanted her to bring me a bottle back… Of course I did. After a bit of digging about I realised this was the only way I would get my hands on it as, although a different story now, it wasn’t available in the UK.

Distilled in Australia, Husk Distilleries use a Thai flowering legume known as the Butterfly Pea (this is where the magic colour changing element comes from!) and 12 botanicals which perfectly compliment it.  With this a new style of gin was created – a colour changing gin.  Although nothing particularly new now this gin was revolutionary at the time.  Adding tonic to the deep blue liquid turned it to a beautiful pink colour… Perfect for social media eh?!

So I tried the gin neat (it’s been a while since I’d had it) and I noted it was citrusy with a little spice… So I figured I’d go full citrus and smash in a citrus tonic… Which I happened to have handy.  Yorkshire Tonic citrus was packed with flavour… The most dominant of which, I felt, was grapefruit.

All in it seemed like a very balanced drink and I did enjoy it but there is something about this gin with just a regular light tonic that I think I prefer.

Garnish – Grapefruit

Country of oriGIN – Australia

RRP – £56 approx

ABV – 43%

G&T Score – 6/10



Burleigh’s King Richard III Leicester Dry Gin with Merchants Heart Pink Peppercorn Tonic

Inspired by the discovery of the bones of Richard III under a carpark in Leicester Burleighs set about creating a gin utilising a botanical blend that would have been available in Medieval times.  Sage, thyme, clove, mace and of course rose… Among others.

The general story and history surrounding Richard III and this gin are particularly interesting and I urge you to go and read it for yourself and not just accept a brief run down from me… I mean… Any gin that starts with a body in a car park is certainly a gin worth reading about… Right?… No?… Just me? Ok then moving on…

I will say that every time I have this gin I think back to my childhood and watching the first series of Blackadder and Richard III wandering about the battlefield shouting Shakespear’s famous line – “A horse, a horse, my Kingdom for a horse”…. Who knew that shed he died in in that show would one day become a car park!

I mixed this amazing, spicy, herby gin with the Merchants Heart pink peppercorn tonic and it was really very nice.  The gin was well suited to ginger ale due to its lovely, warm spice so I decided to try this to bring that spice out from the pepper.  This tonic really added another dimension to this gin…  I may be biased though as it is up there among my favourite .mixers  I love the sweet spice that it brings and how complimentary it was with this gin.

Worth a try.

Garnish – Grapefruit and Rose

Country of oriGIN – Leicester, England

RRP – £35 approx

ABV – 40%

G&T Score – 7/10



Kyoto Distillery Ki NO Bi Gin with Original Tonic Yuzu Tonic

The Japanese spirit industry really seems to be getting a good name about it.  Their whiskey seems to be up there amongst the best and, so far, the gins I’ve tried have been absolutely brilliant.

Kyoto Distillery’s Kinobi gin is my favourite of these.

Kinobi features six groups of botanicals:

  • The base (juniper, orris and hinoki which is a japanese cyprus according to Google)
  • Citrus (yuzu which is a Japanese citrus fruit and lemon)
  • Herb (sansho pepper and kinome sprout which is apparently quite bitter)
  • Spice (ginger)
  • Fruity and Floral (bamboo leaves, red perilla which is a japanese herb…  Maybe from the mint family… Some of these are really hard to look up!)
  • Tea (Gyokuro green tea)

Kinobi is created using an interesting distillation method whereby each of the botanical groups are macerated in rice spirit, individually distilled and then blended all together.  This allows each “layer” to create the harmony and balance of the gin.  The guys at Kyoto seem to feel that this is the ONLY way this gin could be made.

This gin has a really interesting flavour and its one of citrus but with a little hint at the spice underneath.  I fell in love with this gin the very first time I tried it and I haven’t stopped since.  It isn’t one that I really see people talking about but it’s definitely one that people SHOULD be talking about.

I served this with Original Tonic’s yuzu tonic and its the perfect match.

Garnish – pink peppercorn and lemon

Country of oriGIN – Japan

RRP – £44.95 approx

ABV – 45.7%

G&T Score – 9/10



Twitter: @burleighsgin, @Husk_Distillers, @MerchantsHeart, @DistilleryKyoto, @OriginalTonic


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