There’s always a quirky spirit to find these days, especially if your browsing the shelves either in your bar, supermarket or online. But what would you say to a bottle that had a spiked collar neck and has the word ‘Bulldog’ in striking letters? Would you think it was a hard-hitting spirit with a bite of attitude? Would you believe me if I said this were to be a gin? Not your usual quaint, relaxing sort of branding, or indeed tipple, and definitely goes against the norm of the less ruthless category in the market. Bulldog gin though is redefining the barriers of people’s perceptions.
Created by former investment manager and gin and tonic lover, Mr Anshuman Vohra used his experiences of travelling around the globe and combined with them with the expertise of G&J Distillers, based in Warrington, to source 12 botanicals from 8 different countries to create a ‘smooth and harmonious flavour’, something that he apparently felt lacked in other gins. With a bottle that was designed to strike the bold philosophy behind the brand, and a name taken from Sir Winston Churchill and the British ‘Bulldog spirit’ that he was known for, Bulldog has been striving since its humble beginning back in 2007 to being distributed all over the world, and most recently hitting the shores of the USA.
But what makes Bulldog command the attention of gin lovers?
As mentioned, Bulldog has a blend of 12 botanicals, a mix of traditional, and rather exotic ingredients, including Chinese dragon eye, Turkish white poppy seeds, Asian lotus leaves, Italian juniper, Moroccan coriander, German angelica, Spanish lemon, Chinese liquorice, Italian orris, Spanish almonds, Asian cassia and French lavender. The gin is distilled four times within copper pot stills, combined with Norfolk wheat from East Anglia and fresh water from Wales. This creates a consistent gin which is also certified Kosher and vegan-friendly.
So with a rather well-travelled creation, below I give to you my tasting notes –
Bulldog – 40%
Very smooth on the nose with a clean aroma and hint of citrus near the end. Rather soft on the palate with a good mix of juniper, coriander and lemon coming through. A lasting offering that becomes a little dry at the end.
Despite the exotic botanicals, below is a more British creation for you to try –
60 ml Bulldog
15 ml Grapefruit juice
30 ml Pomegranate juice
Combine Bulldog, grapefruit and pomegranate juice in a shaker filled with ice. Top with soda and garnish with a strawberry slice.
So although seen as a rough and ready gin, its exotic combination of botanicals and the spirit of Sir Winston Churchill sees Bulldog gin as a welcomed newcomer who has seen its place in bars, and your drink cabinet, well deserved. I’ve been lucky enough to spend the day with Bulldog gin in the last couple of weeks, and featured within their tour of the G&J Distillers distillery to see first hand how the brand is created. From seeing the stills in action to the intricate machinery used for the packaging, it really does put it all into perspective. If you’re not 100% sure on experiencing Bulldog, check it out first hand. Once you see the level of work that goes into something so simple to create, it can shed a new light onto this dark bottle.
More photos from my Bulldog Distillery trip can be found via my Facebook page.
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