Made exclusively for Craft Gin Club, this edition of Dodd’s gin not only comes in a bigger bottle but has added Jasmine Tea.
Price: ~ £35 (50cl)
Green Jasmine Tea
Ling Heather Honey
As my latest Craft Gin Club (CGC) box arrived with this limited edition gin inside, I decided to review it right away. In future I’ll be reviewing CGC gins as soon as they arrive, to give readers a chance to see what members get each month, and also as a good way of tracking how much I enjoy the gins!
Dodd’s gin had never really been on my radar before this week. I had seen the bottle and liked it, but I don’t hear the name mentioned all too often. I accidentally spoiled myself this month and found out what was in the box the day before it arrived, but I was definitely pleased either way! Dodds is an organic gin, which is a huge plus for me as we try to be as ethically minded as possible. So, here are my thoughts…
I love this bottle! It’s a beautiful shape, and the symmetry of the label really tickles my knees as someone who loves such things. There’s that wonderful gold shine to the label too, as you can see, so it really stands out. The back is equally pleasant, full of information about the distillery, ingredients, stills, and the origins of the spirit, as well as the provenance of the honey. I suppose it’s easy when you’ve got that much label though! It’s bright, clean and eye-catching. My only gripe is that it is really tall. So tall, I had to take the picture on a different shelf as it wouldn’t fit in the regular spot I use! People with small shelves beware!
On the nose, the gin is lovely and crisp with bright notes of juniper and citrus. There’s a slight burn, but beneath that is a little fresh cardamom that adds a hint of spice before fading into a more earthy, grassy aroma. It’s all very light and snappy, bringing a sense of freshness to the nose.
Neat, the gin has an incredibly smooth mouthfeel (thanks to the honey) that glides over the tongue like an olympic ice skater. There’s a rush of juniper and citrus that goes straight from front to back, but bold cardamom flavours follow so close as to be nipping at their heels. There are fresh, earthy hints around the edges, I think from the bay and raspberry leaves, then finally right at the back of the tongue there’s a slow blossoming of the jasmine tea. It’s quite strong, and a little more bitter than the aroma might suggest, but it’s very good.
Add a drop of water and there’s a drastic change! The citrus notes are really soothed and the more earthy, floral tones make huge headway on the tongue. It’s an amazing difference. There’s a much stronger taste of the tea, which is divine, and what I think is the raspberry leaf brings a wonderful freshness to the palate. It could be a different gin, and possibly an even better one. Wow.
Finally, I decided on a G&T using The London Essence Company Pomelo & Pink Peppercorn Tonic I got with the box. It’s nice and bitter in a crisp and fresh way that appeals to me, but I think this highlights my issue with all these flavoured tonics now (another post perhaps?!) in that I don’t feel like I can taste the gin very much at all. It’s a nice drink, but I wonder whether it would be as nice with any decent gin? It doesn’t feel like it compliments the gin as much as I would hope, but I don’t feel like I can take marks away for that.
I’m really impressed with this gin, it’s beautifully smooth and punchy without being heavy, and I was blown away at the flavour development when adding water. I look forward to trying it in other drinks (there’s a take on the Bee’s Knees in the magazine which I think will be great!) and sharing it with friends. It’s certainly got me keeping an eye out for a bottle of Dodds’ regular gin!
But I have mixed feelings on CGC sending out ‘one-offs’. While it’s an obvious draw to join the club and get gins no one else will get (and indeed the main reason I joined was to get gins I might not have heard of or bought myself), there’s something a little sad about having a gin I’ll never get to have again once it’s gone, or one my friends won’t be able to get hold of at all (unless they swiftly join the club!). But that’s a different topic really, so as a final word I will say that this is a great gin!
Dodds regular gin is available online
All reviews are of the author’s personal collection, bought and paid for by the author, unless otherwise stated.