A combination of olive oil, basil, thyme and rosemary makes Gin Mare a rather complex drink. It’s not at all what I expect from a gin in many respects, but in so many ways it is so much more. It is savoury and rather curious, but it is also smooth and balanced; overall it is a sophisticated creature.
Made in the small Spanish fishing town of Vilanova, just outside the city of Barcelona, Gin Mare is a drink that encapsulates all your positive Mediterranean imaginings.
Whist some of botanicals included in this gin such as citrus and cardamom are a common theme amongst artisan gin producers; others such as arbequina olives are not, and when you realize that it takes 15kgs of olives to produce a enough juice to add to each distillation, you can understand why it’s not a common gin recipe ingredient.
In addition to the low juice yielding arbequina olives, cardamom, coriander, sweet oranges, bitter oranges, lemons, thyme, basil, rosemary and juniper berries are all added; which all sounds like a recipe for a jolly tasty marinade. In this gin the resulting flavour is that of the Mediterranean.
Gin Mare is silky, herbaceous and a taste of a warm summer evening on a balcony. The taste of olives and thyme are apparent, but there is also a burst of basil, rosemary and coriander. It is an entertaining drink that makes for a delightful apertivo.
It is a truly authentic herbal gin and that is best enjoyed with a good quality plain tonic water.