It seems in this day and age, the hashtag comes first. Well actually, in this instance around a dozen distillers forged a collective commitment to transform South Australia into the Gin State. It sounds like an Excalibur moment, a knight’s of the round table pledge for the benefit of the people. And thus #TheGinState was born.
If you don’t think these guys are serious, then you underestimate just how exciting our Gin scene is right now. We’ve already got award winners in our midst, with 78 Degrees Gin amongst recent international accolades in San Francisco and waves being made by the likes of Kangaroo Island Spirits, Applewood and Settlers Gin in the national market. Then late last week, the boys from Prohibition Liquor Co also made their latest move. The self proclaimed bootleggers only sold their first bottle just over 6 months ago, but in that short time have blossomed. They’re set to make waves interstate soon as well, but on Thursday night at Bank Street Social they had something else they wanted to share with Adelaide. And it’s something well worth bragging about.At 69%, Prohibition’s Liquor Co.’s latest release, a Bathtub Cut Gin inspired by the 1920s underground Gin being produced across the US, is something of a revelation. It’s alcohol percentage in itself isn’t the selling point because, long ago did we give up the idea that stronger was a selling point. What is incredible is the front palate flavors of grapefruit and even a touch of sweetness, followed by the star anise and wormwood taste that lingers after you try it straight. The alcohol content may seem a prohibitive to some, but a secret that many seasoned neat spirit drinkers will share with you is the second sip is when a liquor will start to reveal it’s true characteristics. Breathe with an open mouth immediately afterwards and the vapours will dissipate fast to reveal another incredible flavour combination created in partnership with Adelaide Hills Distillery and a wonderful compliment to their December first release.
Wes and Adam, the gentlemen behind Prohibition are a humble pair who are simply thankful for the chance to share this passion for spirits with the city they love and in turn, drinkers have returned the favour in spades. Much like the craft wineries and brewers before them, craft spirit creators in Adelaide have found an increasingly thirsty population eager to embrace experimentation and have obliged accordingly.
This particular Gin is unique not only for it’s alcohol content but for the flavours it lends to some classic mixers. But beyond that, it opens up new possibilities for Adelaide bar tenders, including the Bathtub Cut Gin Sour which will now be on offer at Bank Street. Grapefruit bitters and lemon juice accentuate the already present citrus tones of the gin while sugar offsets the star anise. Add a bit of egg white, shake shake and served with a candied blood orange, this is an immediate example of everything that Prohibition are seeking to do. They’re not just creating, they want to reinvent to an extent how Gin as a spirit can be expressed in a glass.This is the sort of innovation Adelaide is demonstrating across our beverage industry right now. What a time to get seriously excited.