The Odd Couple
Eden Mill and Aldi are like an odd couple. From the outside, they seem unsuited. One a multi-national supermarket chain. The other a small craft distiller in Scotland. And yet somehow their relationship is working. Helped along by a £1 million investment.
Aldi Festival of Gin
Aldi seems to have quite a thing for gin lately, what with their Festival of Gin. The cynic in me says they are cashing in on the latest ‘gin craze’. The gin lover in me says ‘Huzzah! Shut up. Who cares!’ And with such quality gins appearing on Aldi’s shelves at such reasonable prices the gin lover is winning. Fifty Eight, Colombo, McQueen and more are all making an appearance at your local store.
Founded by Paul Miller in 2012 in an old brewery and paper mill, Eden Mill is going from strength to strength, with its beer, whisky and gin. Its single malt whisky first bottling bottle no.1 broke the world record on Whisky Auctioneer netting a whopping £7,100. Quite a powerhouse in the drinks industry, perhaps it is not such an odd marriage after all.
The Botanical Project is the progeny of this marriage with Eden Mill producing small batch gins exclusively for Aldi. So far they have produced a Traditional Batch Gin, Blueberry & Vanilla, Elderflower & Citrus and a Peach & Cherry Gin Liqueur. As you would expect from Eden Mill they are all very decent gins indeed. And at less than £20 kind of irresistible.
Eden Mill Chilli and Ginger Gin is the latest in the brood, promising spicy warmth and tangy flavour. Those of you who already have a bottle of one of the Eden Mill gins in your cabinet will recognise the stubby stoneware bottle with its swing stopper.
On the nose fruity juniper with a slight hint of spice, if you really sniff for it.
Definitely gin with juniper there right at the front with the chilli providing warmth. It isn’t too dominant though if you are at all wary of chilli. The ginger is rather shy, providing a slight sour note but no more. This is not a banging chilli and ginger flavoured gin. It is more subtle than that.
Coriander and citrus provide balance. The finish is long and warming.
Not a two-dimensional gin but not overly complex. A good well made gin as you would expect from Eden Mill.
This is a very versatile gin. You can really have fun with the serves.
First up is Merchants Heart Pink Peppercorn tonic, with an orange slice, fresh root ginger and pineapple sage to garnish. This allows the citrus a chance to shine and play up its fruitiness.
Next is plain tonic with lemon, fresh root ginger and a chilli ring, ramping up the zing of the ginger and the heat of the chilli.
Finally, plain tonic again with the spicy one from Ginfusion. The star anise has a chance to shine in this one.
I’m becoming a big fan of Eden Mill. Snap these Botanical Project Gins up while you can. They are not called Limited Release for nothing!
If you would like to buy some of this delicious gin (please don’t unless you are buying me a bottle!) head over to Aldi’s website. They even do cases of 6.