Chasing Home-made Sloe Gin

Chasing Home-made Sloe Gin

The world and his wife makes sloe gin (and so does Prince Philip), but when speaking to both producers and consumers it seems that the folks that make their own sloe gin often buy it, too.  I’m not going to bore you with the details of how to make your own or how I make mine, but I can recommend visiting: for a plethora of recipes and ideas for sloes.

What I will write about are two homemade sloe gins: one that I found in my cellar and is dated 2007, and another, dated 2010, that was kindly given to me at the London Cocktail Society’s Christmas Party.

2007 BS Gin and Sloeth 2010

#1 Sloeth Sloe Gin

The latter was made in Essex with Plymouth Gin and local sloes, and the sweetening was deliberately restrained.  It is a vibrant cherry-red; visually, probably one of the best I’ve seen.

A nose of sweet almond/marzipan matches the taste of the sloes.

The taste has an inital softness before it develops into a dry fruitiness and a wonderful, full flavour. It has a long finish with a dart of sweetness. This could be clearly classified as a gin-led sloe gin, being both more ginny and dryer than most that I’ve tried. There is also a very light, dry bitterness. What is evident is that this could have easily  held its own in our recent taste test of seventeen commercially available sloe gins.

Long Peddler (Sloe Gin & Bitter Lemon/Lemon Tonic)

Once again, this is a lovely coloured drink, and one that tastes very much like a gin & tonic, with a citrus twist from the mixer and a fruity, almond sweetness on the finish. If you like gin & tonics, you would like this.

Sloe Peddler (Sloe Gin & Lemonade)

Lemonade seems to dull the flavour a bit, whereas the lemon tonic balances out the dryness. It is still quite a pleasant drink and, if you like things a bit sweeter, you would prefer this one.

#2 My Home-made Sloe Gin 2007

A long lost discovery in my cellar, this sloe gin is a light red-orange in colour, like a very old port (albeit here is where the comparison ends).

A nose of cherry and almond; fairly standard.

With regards to its flavour, I tasted juniper initially, then some sweetness and a little fruity jam after. There is some bitterness and it is quite warming; it’s not too smooth, but it’s okay.

Long Peddler (Sloe Gin & Bitter Lemon/Lemon Tonic)

This drink had an initial sweetness, but was ultimately very bitter and needed something else to balance it out, but it did have a lot of flavour. There was a strong, bitter aftertaste.

Sloe Peddler (Sloe Gin & Lemonade)

My sloe gin went much better with lemonade than with the lemon tonic; it made for a sweeter and more refreshing drink. Probably the best way to drink this.

My thanks to Mat & Mrs. Mat for the kind gift of their fine home-made sloe gin.

Chase Sloe Gin

I recently had the fortune to be given a hip-flask filled with the rare Chase sloe Gin, if my cryptic sources are correct it is made from a gin with a potatoes base, which is fascinating in itself and something I would quite like to try at some point.

The flask is stainless steel and has brushed metallic black finish, very fine indeed. But what about the contents? Having now tried close to two dozen different sloe gins it was nice to find one that was unlike anything I had tasted before. It was quite juicy and jammy with a very interesting sweetness that reminded me of confection or bonbon there was almost, not quite, a flavour reminiscent of bubblegum which was rather a treat. Needless to say that, alas non is left; the remainder was consumed whilst I was waiting on a  freezing platform for a delayed train.

I look forward to see what happens with Chase Sloe Gin next year.

Chase Sloe Gin (30%ABV) is available here £27.95 for 5ocl. I imagine stocks are rather limited.

This entry was posted in Tastings & Events by DTS. Bookmark the permalink.

About DTS

partial to a martini? to a smoke-hazed gin joint & a perfect tipple poured with the style, swank & skill of a true aficionado? …then pull up your stool to the bar, prepare to stock up your cocktail cabinet & get ready to drink it all in as we introduce you to a stitch in times’ resident barman… David T. Smith is a drinks enthusiast currently residing in the U.K. a long-time fan of tasting & exploring various types of alcohol, he has a fascination for vintage spirits and cocktails, in particular their heritage & origins; this was strengthened last year when he presented a talk and accompanying monograph on the Martini. it was as a result of his research of this topic that he was introduced to drinks paraphernalia, & he is now the happy owner of a colourful collection of bottles, books, and gadgets from a wide range of eras… an avid believer in the validity and variety of personal opinion, particularly in the subjective area of tasting, he enjoys hosting tasting sessions for friends, constantly challenging them to find their own favourite tipple. in addition to all of this, he is also interested in economics, three-piece suits, board games & keeping alive the art of engaging in enjoyable conversation with a good glass of port whilst surrounded by pipe smoke… Thanks to Analiebe for writing this rather flattering blurb for me.

2 thoughts on “Chasing Home-made Sloe Gin

    • Thanks for the comment, that certainly was my understanding, which seems to be confirmed by their website. I admit it is rather a change to the normal order of things but I think Chase like to think outside of the box.

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