One Gin’s second expression: Sage & Apple, arrived exclusively to Craft Gin Club members in March.
Price: ~ £40
Bitter Orange Peel
Sweet Orange Peel
Now on general sale, One Gin’s Sage & Apple is a twist on their original Sage gin (which I’ve never had). The One Foundation is the ethical brand behind the gin and they donate at least 10% of their profits to fund life-changing water projects in the world’s poorest communities. In March, Craft Gin Club also set up a fundraiser for members, with a promise to match up to £10,000 of donations! The original project of the foundation: One Water, has been around since 2005 and the One Brand is now celebrating raising over £19 million for water projects, transforming the lives over 3.5 million people in need.
Great work, I’m sure you’ll agree!
The bottle is a solid, straight sided affair with a slight taper towards the bottom. The label is a pleasant design featuring butterflies and what I assume are a fan of water droplets, but it’s the colours that really set it off and the use of metallic tones reflect light and help make it stand out more. On the back label is a little about the foundation, alond with the usual information. It’s nice, fairly muted but with a little twist in the colours. Nothing to really catch the eye, but it’s pleasant to look at.
On the nose, right behind the juniper is a thick stewed apple aroma that’s very pleasing. There’re touches of herbs and spice that transport you to an old kitchen in a country house where ‘Cook’ is baking a lovely apple cake thats mingling with the smell of fresh herbs. On top of that there are some nicely sour citrus notes to help keep those sweeter ones in check. It smells lovely, but quite sweet and thick.
Sipped neat, the gin for me is overtly appley in taste, but not an eating apple, it’s much more of a stewed dessert taste. There’s a fair amount of burn to it too, unfortunately, but there are some lovely herbal and citrus notes there and I have to say there’s a wonderful interplay of flavours, so much so it’s like a dance on the tongue, with tastes shifting and roving. I feel like I’m chasing things around, trying to pick up on different tastes but struggling to keep up. It’s like you can taste most things individually, but all at the same time. Quite a wonderful experience really.
With water, I am surprised at how much sweeter the gin tastes. There’s still plenty of apple, but space has been made for some beautiful fresh flavours of herbs and spice. I feel like we’re now pretty far from gin territory, but wherever we are it’s absolutely bursting with flavour. It is very sweet though and I’m enjoying it less, despite the abundance of flavour.
Finally, I made a G&T (3:1 SKINNY Light Citrus tonic) garnished with a slice of lemon, in the hopes that it would help tame this sweet beast. The results were a touch disappointing. It’s difficult to explain why this doesn’t quite work (and I’ll admit this is also my first time trying this tonic), but when before, the flavours all worked in harmony (albeit not overly juniper tasting and a little too sweet), they now seem at odds with each other. In honesty, I think I chose the wrong drink.
One’s Sage & Apple is a difficult one for me. Though I am not a gin purist, as you may by now have ascertained, I do think that even for me this strays too far from the flavour profiles I am used to. I even have quite the sweet tooth, but this was not quite sickly, but still too sweet for me to enjoy as a gin. However at the same time I think there are some really great flavours in there. In the right drink I think this could be an absolutely glorious spirit. Plus they give to charity…
Add up to one feather if you love sweet, apple flavours
Remove up to one feather if you really want to taste that juniper
One Sage & Apple is available online and in some shops
All reviews are of the author’s personal collection, bought and paid for by the author, unless otherwise stated.