Nestled in the stunning Cairngorms mountains sits Speyside Distillery. Famous for SPEY single malt whisky, the distillery launched Byron’s Gin in late 2017, with more than a nod towards their long history and it is a challenger for the title of Scotland’s prettiest distillery.
Lord Byron is one of the most famous poets of the Romantic movement. In 1815, to celebrate his wedding, he’s said to have gifted King George III a cask of Scotch whisky, thought to be SPEY Single Malt.
Fast-forward more than 200 years, and the distillery has launched a quite unique gin in homage to their connections with the flamboyant wordsmith.
In Speyside Distillery’s own words Byron’s Gin was crafted to “celebrate Lord Byron’s love of the Scottish Highlands which inspired him to pen some of his most beautiful and memorable poetry.”
Speyside Distillery wanted to create gins using the botanicals in the grounds of their beautiful home, reflecting their time-honoured tradition for handcrafting their Single Malt whisky.
To select the botanicals for this boutique gin, head distiller and master craftsman Sandy Jamieson sought the help of Andy Amphlett, County Recorder for the Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland and Byron’s Gin is now the official gin of the Botanical Society.
The resulting collaboration infused their professional skills, expertise in their respective fields and most importantly their deep passion and produced two expressions of Byron’s Gin – Bird Cherry and Melancholy Thistle – creating a unique and new gin experience for the more sophisticated palate
As the botanicals are seasonal in nature, only 900 bottles of each expression from batch 1 were made. Byron’s Gin is only distilled once a year when the required botanicals are available.
Although you can’t visit the wonderful Speyside Distillery, there is a special tasting room in The Snug, Aviemore, where you can sample both gins.
Byron’s Bird Cherry Gin has notes of sweet fruit with a hint of spice and a velvety smooth and lingering warmth.
Served over frozen blueberries with a slice of lime and a natural tonic to fully enjoy the taste of the gin.
Lord Byron was known as a great romantic and poet, so we were perhaps expecting an intense and floral gin made in his name. But Bird Cherry is juniper-forward while wonderfully sweet and fruity with fresh hints of citrus and a warm, peppery finish. With tonic, the sweet berry flavours are accentuated and the juniper toned down, making a very refreshing G&T.