December 12, 2018

Salcombe Gin to launch Guiding Star, its first sloe & damson gin, in collaboration with Dirk Niepoort

Salcombe Gin, the luxury spirit that strives to embody an adventurous lifestyle on and around the water, is to release its first sloe & damson gin as part of the Salcombe Gin Voyager Series on 1 November. Developed in collaboration with iconic Portuguese wine-maker Dirk Niepoort, this Salcombe Gin Voyager Series release is named ‘Guiding Star’ after one of the famous Salcombe Fruit Schooners built in 1874. 

The distilling team at Salcombe Gin and Dirk Niepoort have brought together their combined expertise in balancing and perfecting flavours and aromas to create an exceptional tawny port cask-finished sloe & damson gin. Salcombe Gin created a new gin recipe as a base for the sloes and damsons, taking into account the residual sugar content of the fruit and handpicked botanicals which would complement the natural aromas and flavours whilst drawing out the fruit’s natural sweetness. 

The sloes and damsons were macerated in the gin to draw out the natural aromas, flavours, sugars and colour of the fruit before the liquid was filtered and finished for three months in an 80-year-old tawny port cask that previously held Niepoort’s famous Colheita 1997 20-year-old tawny port. 

Unlike most sloe gins, no sugar has been added to ‘Guiding Star’, with the natural sweetness coming from the lees in the port cask, creating an exceptionally well-balanced gin that has depth and body with a complex bitter sweet finish. The brick-red liquid has a strong backbone of juniper combined with classic combinations of rose petals, fresh orange peel and bitter almonds to enhance the handpicked fruit. 

Dirk commented: “It was a pleasure to work with the team at Salcombe Distilling Company to create this truly exceptional gin. Angus and I worked together at our winery in Portugal to refine the recipe, choosing botanicals that would complement the complex aromas and flavours in our tawny port and to hand-pick the perfect cask for aging the liquid to ensure a perfectly balanced flavour that the Niepoort family are proud of.”

“We are extremely excited to be working with Dirk Niepoort and his team at the world famous Niepoort Winery to create this very special addition to the Salcombe Gin Voyager Series,”commented Angus Lugsdin, Salcombe Gin co-founder. “With a shared love for distinctive flavours and combining tradition with innovation, we have worked together to create this exceptional premium sloe & damson gin.”

Dirk Niepoort

This Salcombe Gin Voyager Series release is the third of a collection of limited-edition gins developed in collaboration with iconic winemakers or world-renowned chefs. Limited to 1,500 bottles, ‘Guiding Star’ is presented in a stunning white ceramic bottle featuring an embossed outline of the iconic gin pennant and a bespoke, debossed, copper stopper commissioned for the series.

Salcombe Gin Voyager Series ‘Guiding Star’: a collaboration with Niepoort is priced at £65 per 50cl bottle. Available online at salcombegin.com, from the Salcombe Gin Distillery and Victuallers, and at selected independent retailers from 1 November 2018.