Langley’s recently expanded their range for the first time since their launch back in April 2013 with the addition of the Old Tom expression. It’s with this that it’s a good opportunity to re-visit one of the mainstays in the recent gin renaissance here in the UK.
Langley’s Distillery was founded back in 1920 by the Palmer family, who incidentally still own it today. It’s within this distillery that the pot still ‘Connie’, created in England back in 1960, is used to house the harvested 8 botanicals for their small batched production of the No.8 expression. Botanicals include juniper berries from Macedonia, coriander seeds from Bulgaria, sweet orange peel and sweet lemon peel from Spain, cassia bark from Indonesia and ground nutmeg from Sri Lanka.
Mark Dawkins and business partner Mark Crump approached Langley’s Distillery, one of the three main gin distilleries in the UK, in late 2011, and worked with master distiller Rob Dorsett over the next 10 months to hone the botanical list mentioned. Once the 100% English grain spirit and botanicals were ready, it’s reported that the final abv chosen was also supposedly the eighth tasted from a final shortlist of twelve possible percentages.
So how does it fare? Well below, I give to you my tasting notes –
Langley’s No.8 – 41.7%
Lemon dominates on the nose with hints of juniper following soon after. A little sharp on the beginning of the palate with a dry spice developing. A lingering finish that’s smooth but dry.
Langley’s Old Tom – 40%
Evolved from an 1891 recipe, the Old Tom brings together 8 secret botanicals. Creamy citrus notes on the nose, followed by a slow kick of fennel, lemon peel and coriander that mounts to a smooth, soft, sweetened finish that lingers.
Both fantastic on their own, but of course it would be rude not too have it within one of these –
50 ml Langley’s No. 8
15 ml Vermouth
5 ml Olive water/brine
1 Bella di Cerignola olive
Combine all of the ingredients in a cocktail tin and stir over cubed ice. Strain and pour in to a small goblet. Garnish with the olive.
Old Tom Collins
50 ml Langley’s Old Tom
20 ml Fresh Lemon Juice
10 ml Sugar Syrup
Top with Soda
Combine the ingredients within a highball glass and stir. Add cubed ice, then pour over soda water. Garnish with a slice of fresh lemon.
Of course there’s nothing against having this within a gin and tonic either, but whatever your pleasure, both definitely worth of a place within your drinks cabinet.
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