This week, it was with great excitement that I got to try the final version of Campfire Gin. Made at the Puddingstone Distillery in the Chiltern Hills, it is a spirit and distillery whose progress I have followed closely, with the added bonus that they are based quite close to the in-laws.
The gin is described as bridging traditional and progressive styles – what some people refer to as a Transatlantic or Cary Grant Gin; a gin grounded in the British distilling tradition, but with a little modern flair. It is probably my favourite style.
Campfire Gin has traditional botanicals such as juniper and orange, as well as the more contemporary choices of hazelnut and coffee berry.
On its own
Nose: Citrus, with a chocolatey berry note and a hint of dark chocolate/coffee, then a little juniper toward the end.
Taste: This is a smooth and elegant spirit that evolves in the mouth: to start, notes of juniper and the round, plump flavours of sweet orange – zesty with a little spice. Then comes a little berry jamminess, before a mix of nutty dark chocolate and earthy florality. There’s a little more spice on a long and lingering finish.
Soft, subtle, and spicy, with berry notes, followed by some milk chocolate and orange. All of this makes for a mellow and sippable drink.
Dead smooth, with the orange peel adding a lovely, aromatic air. It is crisp, but has some cosy middle notes of berry fruit, as well as deeper earthy notes.
The jammy notes of the coffee berry work well with the herbal vermouth and the bitter-sweet Campari, giving the drink both a succulent quality and a pleasant mellowness. A very good Negroni that is really rather moreish.
Campfire Gin delivers exactly what it promises and is a fine balance between traditional and modern gins. The gin is layered and the dark chocolate and berry notes work really well with the juniper, angelica, and other botanical flavours.
My favourite drink was the Negroni, although Campfire Gin is great to drink on its own.