The North Wind in a Bottle
40% abv ~ Spain
Nordes is said to be Spanish for the northerly Atlantic wind which breezes across the shores of Galicia in northwestern Spain. This rather romantic nomenclature gives Nordes Atlantic Galician Gin an air of wild romanticism which other gins just fail to match up to. One imagines storm lashed rugged coastlines with native Spaniards clinging to rocks in their bare feet to harvest the botanicals. Anyways, before I get too Barbara Cartland lets move on.
The base spirit is made from the Albarino grape, a white wine grape. Although grain is the typical base for gin it is not that unusual for a grape base to be used. But the base spirit always comes through in gin. And as the Albarino grape is said to have a richly unique botanical aroma with its roots in Galicia it is perhaps a fitting base spirit for this unique gin.
The production method is slow distillation with 12 botanicals in total. 6 local to Galicia: verbena, laurel, sage, glasswort, eucalyptus and mint. The other 6 emanate from the four points of the compass: juniper, cardamom, ginger, hibiscus, liquorice and tea.
The distinctive bottle takes its predominantly blue and white colours from the Galician flag, stamping the gin with territorial credentials. It’s a chunky little number but pours well. Unlike some of its squat little cousins.
A curiously seductive mix of potpourri, faint pine resin and bubblegum.
It’s strange but every time I taste this gin ~ and I’ve tasted it a lot ~ it always has a few surprises in store. This gin grabs you by the taste buds like no other.
At times it can taste rather medicinal. Something I put down to the eucalyptus and mint. At other times it tastes rather sherbety. No idea where that comes from.
Juniper is there, although somewhat faintly. If you’re a diehard juniper-head look away now. The juniper is escorted to one side by some quite colourful botanicals.
I can taste the tang of black tea and spicy tingle of ginger. Menthol and lemon also make their presence felt. The finish is long and the mouthfeel medium. It can on occasion taste a bit floral like an old lady’s perfume.
But don’t let this put you off. It truly is a marvellously tasty gin.
Albeit one that divides our household down the middle in terms of opinion. I like it. Other half doesn’t. Although he is coming round to my way of thinking ~ eventually.
This is where the fun starts. Because of its complexity, you can be as creative as your imagination takes you.
Given the herbaceous botanicals, it is too tempting not to nip into the garden and harvest a few herbs for the garnish.
On this occasion, I paired it with Fever-Tree Mediterranean tonic, apple, mint from the garden and frozen blueberries.
If you would like to know about this gin I would urge you to buy a bottle. Then invite me round ~, please…