After the success of #ProjectAFG the boys at Little Brown Dog Distillery have been working hard on their second commercial (I use that term loosely) release. Only 150 350ml flasks have been produced from the micro-micro distillery, based in West Aquorthies in the shadow of Bennachie.
The idea of #ProjectGPS is to produce a drink where the GPS of every botanical can be identified, locating where each forage has taken place, highlighting the great produce of the area and the hidden botanicals of Aberdeenshire.
Andrew and Chris are both very proud and particular about their releases. Practising, testing and repeating the process of distillation meticulously to get what they regard as the finest cut, with the finest flavours of the region. A true reflection of their dedication to locality, hand sourcing and taste.
The second release in their Experimental series might not hit the commercial heights or production rates of the Glenfiddich Whisky series (not yet anyway!) but the care and attention given to each product is not any less passionate.
LBD recently upgraded their still from a 10 litre to a 100 litre Copper still with copper basket, a huge upgrade, relatively speaking, and will allow more experiments to take place. Working the stills in tandem, the 10 litre will continue life as a development still, with the larger still more focussed on production.
No two releases will be repeated, that is the promise of Little Brown Dog, so this release truly is as rare as they come. Fear not though, fans of this great wee project will be seeing a core product (more than likely a Gin) coming in 2020
The ingredients’ location will all be Geo-tagged in time, allowing us all to see the beautiful flavours from the release. With only two part time workers however, this will take time. All the botanicals have been picked from within 500 metres of the still – a rare and fantastic achievement.
So here I go, opening a sample of the 45% ABV spirit. Poured from the test tube a wonderfully green, fresh aroma fills the air, to the point that my own brown dog noses the air in silent affection.
Into the glass and I get a nose of mint, cucumber and berries. Some pine perhaps but really sweet, tempting and alluring. No burn of that 45%, distilled to perfection.
On the taste that fresh cucumber and berries carry forward, with the mint taking a back step. Wild raspberries and blueberries give that lovely fruity flavours. A really juicy mouthfeel. Some citrus comes through in a creamy texture. Green notes come through on the finish, subtle but lingering. Pine and woody notes stick to the palate in a dry finish. The finish is short, which is surprising given the luscious, full on fruit and mint explosion of the palate. A wonderful neat spirit.
I’m not even sure what to call this. It’s certainly not gin! An Eau de Vie perhaps? Botanical Spirit doesn’t do it justice, it is much more than that. There are pine/woody notes reminiscent of gin, coming from the forrest botanicals included in the mix, beech and birch leaves, wood sorell, which also gives the citrus note, and nettles.
Whatever it is, it tastes great. I think that without doubt, it will appeal to the gin drinker, but also the white rum and vodka drinker. There is lots to enjoy here, and that’s just on an initial glimpse. I cannot wait for more! And more is to come, hopefully this week – at the Inverurie Whisky Shop as well as other selected outlets.
If, like my own Little Brown Dog Lilo on the left here, you are putting on the puppy-dog eyes for some of this beautiful dram, Pre Orders are available now from Inverurie Whisky Shop by clicking here.
December 4, 2019 at 03:56
Can you please hold one for me, two if possible? I’ll come get them, pay up front….anything to ensure I can get to try these?
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December 12, 2019 at 15:10
First, I thank you and LBD for the new gin. The little taste in the shop made me wonder if this was “my thing” but then I got it home and it’s delightfully different I have to say…at least for me. The first thing I said upon the wee taste at the shop was wow, BERRY! I do find the mint lingers quietly in the background but it took me a few minutes to realize that the berries might dominate but the pine is actually what I couldn’t not notice next and perhaps, like my husband you’re always right, but thinking of your review, the pine is very much the taste that lingers.
My heart genuinely missed AFG but this one is lovely. Like some people, it takes some time and patience, you learn to really enjoy its difference. To me, the berries, the pine…it’s absolutely a Scottish gin.
My husband makes a slightly crazy non alcoholic drink, the recipe of which he was given by a restaurant we go to and I think they’ll be a beautiful couple as an option.
That said, our Christmas morning beverage of celebration with his family is always champagne. Lovely but we have created our own tradition and have Bloody Marys Christmas morning (slightly more Californian, like me)… so I shall see you all for a bottle of Colonsay (spelling) if it’s in so we can have red snappers? With my brother in law, wife and a bit of milk for our little lady, a 17 month niece named Alabama.
If I don’t see you, best wishes for a Merry Christmas and what sounds like a wonderful new year.
Thank you as always
Cari Sim and the husband