Clover gin is the creation of the three Ickroth sisters who were inspired by the heathland and greenery of their childhood in the Kalmthoutse Heide on the Belgian-Dutch border.
Price: ~ £34 (50cl)
After an 8 month adventure to discover their perfect tasting gin, the sisters ended up with the original Clover gin, and after that, Lucky No. 4.
As far as I can make out, this gin includes the botanicals listed above in addition to those of the original (but I’m not 100% on that so don’t quote me!), which are: Black pepper, Clover (the ‘secret ingredient’), Coriander seed, Lavender, and Pear.
The bottle is a lovely rounded affair, matching the style of the gin and branding. There are no harsh lines or corners here! It’s beautifully printed with gold clover leaves, some in outline and some filled in. It holds the absolute bare minimum of information, and is done in such a way that there is no real distinction between the design and the labelling. It’s simple, stylish, and elegant.
On the nose, sweet, fruity pear drops spring out, bright and clear, along with a hint of green tea which helps add enough tang to prevent the sweetness from becoming sickly. It’s clean and crisp, full of high fruity notes, as well as subtle floral tones like a mountain meadow, with the clover and lavender. It’s that sort of ephemeral wildflower smell you can never quite catch fully, but is instantly recognisable. At the back is a very light peppery tingle, and some slightly more bitter citrus notes, but only very faint. Overall it’s the pear that comes through above all else.
Neat it’s more floral and green than the aroma would suggest. Instead of a mouthful of sweet, juicy pear, it’s actually more citrusy and grassy/herbal. The pear is short lived on the tongue (which I think is a good thing otherwise it would overpower) and the flavours then open up to a warmer orange with hints of lavender and actually I think a fair amount of clover. It’s very very interesting, though I can’t say I can taste juniper.
With a drop of water, things unfold beautifully and while it does hold the pear flavour a little longer, it really opens up the warmth of the clementine and bitterness of the bergamot, but also the floral nature of the lavender. The tea comes through more subtly with that classic bitterness, but if anything the overall flavour is sweeter than when sipped neat. It sort of goes out in all directions, a little more bitter, a little more sour, a little spicier, but also sweeter. It’s beautiful, though the juniper remains elusive.
Finally, a G&T (3:1 Fevertree Mediterranean Tonic) with a sprig of rosemary and some pink peppercorns to garnish. I thought that with the floral nature of the gin, this tonic would be a good match. I was not wrong. This is an absolutely stunning drink. It’s sweet and floral, and the pear mixes beautifully along with the more bitter citrus notes. The closer and lavender work well with the tonic, and overall it creates a wonderfully balanced drink. It’s on the sweet side for sure. This is not a dry G&T by any stretch of the imagination, but if you’re in the mood for a light, crisp, sweet, and fruity G&T you’re in for a treat.
One of the things I love most about gin is its versatility. That I can be in the mood for something dry and citrusy, warm and spicy, or sweet and fruity and, provided I know what I’m getting, can select a gin that will fulfil that, is what makes this spirit so great. That’s also what makes it quite difficult to review at times. I always try to make it clear that this blog is of course based on my own experience, opinion, and preference, which I try to take into account when scoring. So with that said, I really like this gin. It’s well into the contemporary category, for sure; I can’t taste juniper at all here, but what I can taste, I like a lot. I very much hope to try the original at some point, but if you get the chance to try Lucky No. 4 I recommend you do so.
Add half a feather if you love pears
Remove up to 1 feather if you prefer dry, juniper-led gin
Clover gin is available online
All reviews are of the author’s personal collection, bought and payed for by the author, unless otherwise stated.