La Fleuriste is a French gin named in homage to its botanicals.
Price: ~ £20
Bitter orange peel
Grains of paradise
This gin was one of the collection made available through Aldi in the UK. Distilled in France and in part using grapes (I’m unsure what the other distillate is, but the chances are it’s wheat), it’s a London Dry about which very little other information can be found (at least by me)!
The bottle is a pleasant conical shape with a slight taper. On the front is a delicately illustrated monochrome label with lovely floral lines and shapes surrounding the name of the gin. Also printed in faint text are the botanicals. On the back is another label with the usual legal text printed in grey, below another pleasantly designed description of the gin. It’s very simple, but the label is lovely and I think makes it look nice and classy.
First out of the glass are fresh notes of coriander seed, aromatic and with a mild citrus. Trailing behind is a touch of anise that passes with a little kick, but the overall sense is that of fresh but warm aromatic spices. Juniper remains a backdrop to it all, and though it doesn’t have a great deal of expansiveness, it’s a lovely smelling gin.
Neat, the liquid is warming with a touch of viscosity. For an instant, it has a classic gin profile, but before that flavour even really has time to develop, anise rolls through like a steam train and overpowers almost everything. It’s almost like an absinthe washed gin, though once it settles down there are noticeable flavours from the grapes and grains of paradise which improve the experience. It’s an unexpected taste based on the aroma, but it’s not bad, provided you’re not put off by aniseed.
Water pulls through elements of ginger and bitter peel (rather than orange), and the anise is tempered, which is good. The flavour is much greener, with the grapes expanding throughout the flavour profile. There’s a fresh, butter taste with a bit of a tingle on the tongue. The flavours are definitely diluted, but so is that overall taste. What extras are brought out by the water are only part of a larger, less flavoursome drink.
Finally, a G&T (3:1 Fever Tree Mediterranean with a sprig of rosemary – as recommended by someone on the internet!). The result is… odd, but not bad. The sweetness from the tonic cuts through the anise flavours well, but I am not convinced something more bitter that could compliment it more might be a better option. Still, it is what it is so I’ll go with it. There are definitely some interesting flavours in this combination and it improves with each sip. I think it does a good job of bringing out the more citrus notes, though floral notes there are none really to speak of. It’s good, but at the same time it feels like there’s a bit of a battle of bitter, sharp flavours against the sweet florals of the tonic. I can’t deny though, it really does improve with every sip!
It’s a bit of a funny one, this. The flavours it has (which as I’ve said, are not many, or diverse) are very good, but ultimately they are limited. The one thing I would say though is that by the time I finished the G&T I was really enjoying it!
If you’re a fan of sharper, more bitter notes of aniseed then you should like this a lot. If not, you probably won’t like it much at all. And that’s if you can even get hold of it any more!
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La Fleuriste is currently unavailable
All reviews are of the author’s personal collection, bought and paid for by the author, unless otherwise stated.