I’ve not done many Gin reviews on the blog, this partly down to me not knowing what is supposed to be a good Gin and what isn’t. So over the past six months I’ve been trying more Gins out, finding what works and what doesn’t work for me. Being truthful from the start Gin & Tonic is a no go, I’ve tried many different styles & types of tonic and I’ve not yet found one that makes any of the Gins I’ve tried better.
So for me a good Gin has to be one I can sip neat if I want to, then from there I can look at what I feel will best complement it as far as cocktails or mixers go. It generally ends up being something light and refreshing although not all have been that way, having now tried quite a few different Gins from all around the UK I thought it was time to do some reviews.
Oban Bay small batch Botanical Gin is produced exclusively for Oban Whisky and Fine Wines, a great little whisky shop in the heart of Oban. I’m afraid I don’t have any details about the make up of the Gin, so I can’t tell you what botanicals are used or how big the batch sizes are. Bottled at 46% abv, I believe they are on 8th batch at the moment and it was first released in December 2016. It mustn’t be confused with Oban Gin which has an interesting and maybe controversial story, a quick search online will reward you some interesting reading if you want to pass an hour.
Anyway back to the small batch Botanical Gin, I must thank Dan from Whiskybuys for the sample. So here are my tasting notes and thoughts..
Nose: Light & gentle, sweet lemon, the Juniper is very soft, a touch of rosehips, a nice subtle hint of orange in the background..
Palate: Soft, Creamy, Juniper is gentle in presence, lemon is still sweet, a nice floral note something like rose water..
Finish: Not to long with the gentle juniper staying to the end, light, sweet and refreshing very easy drinking.
I wasn’t quite sure what to expect when I tried this, maybe having visited Oban for so many years growing up I was expecting something more robust and saline like. What I wasn’t expecting was something so light and delicate, refreshing and almost uplifting, it was a complete surprise. The nose is so light and gentle and the palate follows through, with such delicate flavours dancing across you tongue. You can definitely see yourself sitting with a glass of this maybe, with a slice of pink grapefruit as the shop suggests. Looking out across Oban Bay on a beautiful sunny day, just letting the world pass you by as you enjoy the peace and tranquillity.
I was so impressed with this that I asked a friend to let me know what he thought about it (Ryan loves his Gins), he completely agreed with me so much so he’s asked for the details of where to buy it. The wife also really enjoyed this, so I guess I’ll be starting a collection of Gins sometime soon with this being one of the first on the list to purchase.