Got a bit of a sweet tooth? Well, McQueen has just the thing to satisfy it - Chocolate Cherry Gin! David T. Smith investigates...
If there is a flavour that we at That Boutique-y Gin Company know works well with gin, it’s cherry; the popularity of our Cherry Gin shows that the world of gin drinkers likes it, too. Another flavour that works well with cherry is chocolate and so for this release we have teamed up with McQueen Gin from Trossachs Distillery; they are already well-known for their mint chocolate and mocha gins, so it seemed like a bit of a no-brainer.
Trossachs Distillery, located in Callander, Scotland, are the team behind McQueen Gin, founded in 2016 by Vicky and Dale McQueen. Vicky has a background as a chef and Master Baker, whilst Dale is a chartered mechanical engineer.
Their initial gin line-up consisted of “Sweet citrus”, “Smoky Chilli”, Chocolate Mint” and “Mocha” (aka chocolate-coffee). Soon after, they released a flagship, classic London Dry Gin and, in Christmas 2017, they released a White Chocolate and Raspberry special edition gin.
Taking a base gin of botanicals used in other McQueen gins, the distillery team have added chocolate and organic, dried sour cherries from Uzbekistan. The gin is 100% distilled - so all of its flavour comes from its botanicals and not flavours added after distillation - and technically qualifies as a London Dry Gin.
The founders of McQueen Gin, Vicky & Dale McQueen, sit aboard a rowing boat, floating on a loch in the Trossachs. Dale is picking some fresh fruit from a cherry tree on the bank of the loch, perfect for a garnish to a gin tonic he’s just made or to top a slice of decadent Black Forest Gateau, evidently homemade by Vicky herself. Two other members of the family, dogs Rosie and Snowy, are looking longingly at the bank, probably hoping for a run around.
Nose: Soft, dry cocoa with a peek of black cherry.
Taste: Dark chocolate sauce, before the arrival of chocolate-dipped black cherries, which add a lightly tart fruitiness.
Finish: Dry juniper, as well as an encore of chocolate - think of a chocolate sponge cake complete with chocolate curls.
Choc-cherry Gin Tonic
50ml Chocolate Cherry Gin
150ml Tonic Water (Peter Spanton’s No9 Tonic Cardamom is ideal, but this recipe works well with any standard Indian tonic
Fill a large wine glass or gin tonic glass with ice, and add the gin, then the tonic. Garnish with a cherry and a dash of chocolate bitters and, for an indulgent touch, some chocolate shavings or crushed Cadbury Flake.
25ml Chocolate Cherry Gin
25ml double cream
1 tsp brown sugar
A do-it-yourself cream “liqueur”. Stir the ingredients together and then pour into a tumbler. Serve with a couple of ice cubes.
An indulgent treat, ideal at the end of an evening, but great any time. Why not pre-batch a few drinks’ worth in a bottle and keep it in the fridge?