Head To The Caorunn Distillery This Autumn

summer bbq and packshotThe Caorunn Gin Plant at Balmenach  Distillery, home to Caorunn Gin, is open to the public and gin lovers from near and far will be able to book a tour round the famous distillery to learn about the special botanicals and processes that go into making the much-loved craft gin.

The Balmenach Distillery is a destination quite unlike any other in Scotland; it lies in the heart of Speyside’s rolling hills, with breath-taking views of the highlands. Visitors can learn more about the Scottish botanicals including dandelion, heather, coul blush apple, bog myrtle and rowan berry –  which all grow in the surrounding countryside and blend together to create Caorunn’s distinct flavour.

Each batch of Caorunn is passionately handcrafted in small batches by Gin Master, Simon Buley. Visitors will be guided through the craft process used to create the exceptional Scottishgin . Guests on the Caorunn Gin Tour will gain an insight into Caorunn’s artisanal production process through a privileged behind-the-scenes tour of the production area. What’s more, visitors will be given the truly unique chance to discover the world’s only working Copper Berry Chamber, which gives Caorunn it’s clean and versatile taste. Built in the 1920s the Chamber is legacy to a time when all gin was produced using this slow, careful process.

The tour includes  an intimate and personal Gin Masterclass, where guests will uncover the history of Scotland’s best loved gin.

The tutored sampling section of the tour is sure to be a highlight, where guest will taste how Caorunn has distilled the essence of the Scottish Highlands into a glass. Visitors will be taken on an aromatic taste adventure and enjoy a deconstructed nosing and tasting session to learn how locally foraged ingredients are used to create the uniquely dry and crisp, aromatic flavour of Caorunn. Caorunn will be sampled both neat and as a classic Caorunn &T, served with red apple to complement its fragrant tasting notes.

There will be one intimate tour each day, for a maximum of six guests. Tours cost £10 per person and start at 11.30am, Monday to Thursday. To make a booking or for more information, please call + 44 (0)1479 874933 or send your enquiry to tour@caorunngin.com

Caorunn Tasting Notes

Theres always an interest in small crafted, traditional back-to-its-roots spirits these days. and a Scottish gin has been available for the past few years which has been causing a stir in this particular market – Caorunn.

Caorunn is inspired by Celtic tradition with the use of five Celtic botanicals, a traditional gin plant and handcrafting process. Their unique Copper Berry Chamber is used to infuse the carefully chosen blend of six traditional gin botanicals and five Celtic botanicals. All this happens at the Balmenach Distillery which itself is one of the oldest distilleries in the Speyside region.

As mentioned, Caorunn is a handcrafted, small batch distilled gin controlled by the Gin Master, Simon Buley. A small batch is usually 1,000 litres and use pure grain spirit instead of the more widely used molasses. This is to ensure of Caorunn’s high quality. Once distilled three times, the pure grain spirit is vaporised twice through the round copper framed chamber of the Copper Berry Chamber that was made back in the 1920’s, when gin was produced with a slow process to enable enough time to infuse the subtle flavour of the botanicals. Spreading the 11 botanicals over four trays in the chamber allows the grain spirit vapour to meet the botanicals on a largest possible surface during the infusion process.

The five celtic botanicals used are –

Rowan Berry
Bog Myrtle
Coul Blush Apple
Dandelion Leaf

As well as six traditional botanicals –

Coriander Seed
Orange Peel
Lemon Peel
Angelica Root
Cassia Bark

With these combinations of rather interesting botanicals, it produces a rather interesting gin –

Caorunn – 41.8%

Lively on the nose with lots of floral and citrus aromas dancing well. Rather sharp on the palate when it first hits that develops into a long finish with hints of aniseed that drys a little.

With the dryness of Caorunn, its perfect for many a cocktail including a Martini, Gin & Tonic and this perfect summer recipe –

Caorunn Manzangria

Glass –

Goblet or red wine glass

Ingredients –

50ml Caorunn Gin
Top Fentimans tonic water
25ml Orange juice
75ml Red wine

Method –

Add gin, red wine and orange juice to glass with cubed ice. Stir, add garnishes of tightly tied cinnamon stick, lemon slices, orange slices and apple slices, top with tonic water, then grate nutmeg over the top.

A simple serve that not only looks good, but can also be enjoyed as a punch to share with friends and family.

You can purchase a bottle of Caorunn here, and follow them on Facebook for plenty more cocktail ideas.

Check out more photos, taken at The Circle 360, via my Facebook page.