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Drink Review: Old Raj Gin (46%)

A remarkable gin, infused with a large amount of saffron, a rare and costly spice derived from the crocus flower. In addition to a slightly spicy flavour, this also gives the gin a pale yellow colour.

Old Raj Gin:

The first taste is difficult to describe – unique. But as you drink further and further, the taste of the aromatic spice becomes much more clear.

Gin (or ‘Genever’) traditionally has juniper berries mixed in – so this is a good base to work from. But even these juniper berries aren’t exactly like those used in tradition gin. Several botanicals are used during the gin making process, and these are meant to affect the flavour and colour of the final product.

However, Old Raj is a clear colour to begin with thanks to the saffron. But, it has a great flavour! It has a very ‘yellow’ taste and it is slightly spicy. The base flavours are great and the saffron really makes it unique.

Gin anise. These flavour notes are more obvious than they might be in some more traditional gin, but the saffron is getting very distinctive. It is working well with the juniper berries and the

A bit of lime helps to slow things down a bit, but this is not a gin to be drunk quickly. Take the time to enjoy the taste, and savour the delicate flavour of the unique ingredient; do not miss the light spices.

 

Old Raj Gin Review 1:

This is a very classy gin in that it doesn’t play around. This doesn’t have any lemon flavours – this tastes of saffron and juniper, with some cinnamon. The aftertaste will linger, but do not expect it to be citrusy.

Not only is this nice in a Gin and Tonic, it goes well in a Martini too. We think it will also be excellent in some herbal tea, an essential recipe of any true tea enthusiast.

On Mixology:

I’ve been enjoying this new gin, this time in the form of a most pleasant Gin Sour. According to the title, the author has used Fever Tree Indian Tonic… not easy to find, but one day I will have it in my Bloody Mary (how can I resist?).

Gin Sour:

In a medium to tall glass add 2-3 ice cubes

Pour in:

  • Old Raj Saffron Gin (45%)
  • Fever Tree Indian Tonic
  • Pink grapefruit juice
  • grapefruit twist
  • Citrus wedge (garnish)

Stir thoroughly with ice, strain into a cocktail or martini glass, avoid the ice cube, and add a squeeze of lemon juice.

Fill the glass most of the way and float a small amount of tonic on top, that should be fine.

Starting to drink, feeling a bit like a member of the family – a bit like Mother.

 

Old Raj Saffron Gin Review: A bit more history:

The people of India grew saffron for centuries; at least 5,000 years ago. Saffron is one of the most expensive spices in the world, and costlier than saffron was considered to be the most valuable trade item of the Roman Empire until the Arab conquests.

The first recorded use of saffron in Britain as a medicinal herb was in the 12th century. The earliest reference to its use as a textile dye was in the 13th century, while it was the identifying spice of Medieval sauces. It was also used in medicines, and was used in the treatment of headaches and diseases of the menstrual cycle.

It became a very popular flavouring in the 18th century, when it was used as a spice for foods such as bouillabaisse in Marseilles and bouillabaisse in Marseilles along with soles.

It took a long time for saffron, which was thought to be from the part of Iran, to get to Europe and Spain. It is said that it was traded on camelback during the Middle Ages, in the form of a heavy sack.

The use of saffron has changed over the centuries, in England, it was used in food, in Spain, for dyeing textiles, and in Ayurvedic medicine.

Written by Mark Adams

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