New Year New Gin!
The Half Hitch Gin tasting at The Oliver Conquest actually happened before Christmas, but its been so busy so I didn’t get a chance to post about it before now…
Now I’m super excited about Half Hitch as it combines two of my passions – gin and Camden! Its made by Mark Holdsworth in the vaults near Camden Lock, the exact location a closely kept secret 😉
This was also the inspiration for the name – the Half Hitch is a type of knot that was used on the canal to tie the boats up and can be seen in the logo:
Mark makes the gin starting with a London Dry style and then compounds it with tinctures including the ‘USP’ black tea & bergamot, wood and pepper. The final flavour of hay is then added via vacuum distillation.
The gin is a golden straw colour as a result of using the tinctures – all the flavours added have colour – but it doesn’t look like tea! When tasted the flavours first evident were a limey citrus coming from the bergamot (a bitter orange/lemon from the mediterranean) and spice from the pepper. Everyone noticed the long finish on the neat gin.
Gin ‘n Juice – posh styles (photo credit Kimmy from Gritty and Pretty blog)
This leads nicely to the first cocktail we tried – Gin ‘n Juice! Now I’ve had a bad experience with supermarket gin and value orange juice at university, so this was going to be make or break…
Mark explained that the key to making this work with his gin was fresh seville orange juice – so we all had a go squeezing the oranges!
Homemade Gin n’ Juice!
I was pleasantly surprised with the final result! The fresh orange really works with the bergamot citrus hit in the gin and the overal flavour profile is much better suited to match the juice than a strong juniper hit gin.
The other way to bring out the black tea flavours with dilution is to make a vigorously shaken martini (diluting with the ice) so we all had a go with the shaker and voila:
Martini perfection from Mark (photo credit Kimmy from Gritty and Pretty blog)
We left with a souvenir bag – complete with Mark’s catch phrase – the G with the Tea!
If you are interested in finding out more about Half Hitch or buying it to try then check out the website here: Half Hitch
Gin Club had a good outing at the tasting, follow The Oliver Conquest on twitter to keep in the loop on future gin tastings, or just pop in to try one of their 230+ gins!