The first thing I noticed about The London No 1 Gin is the lovely blue color. The color reminds me of crystal clear water lapping at the seashore. That is most calming in my opinion. What I really appreciated about the color is it is Color Certified. What exactly does Color Certified mean?
According to the FDA, “Color Certification is a Congressionally mandated program for FDA enforcement of specifications by batch certification of the certifiable color additives that are added to foods, drugs, cosmetics, and medical devices in the United States.”
Color additives are substances that impart color to a product. The London No 1 Gin gets its color from the gardenia plant. Gardenias are primarily white, so how is the gin blue?
A brand representative explained the process this way:
“When The London No.1 was conceived, Mr. Gill and Mr. Maxwell wanted to create a gin that would have a point of difference with its color that would also give some flavour and aroma too. They discovered the Gardenia flower, which would give the gin a unique turquoise hue and also a slight aroma of jasmine. Although this process was a solution to their requirements, the gardenia would cloud within the gin over time and they had to find an alternative, which is what we still use today. Our blue color is a blue alkaline coloring and gardenia extract blend which is added to the gin after distillation and then stabilized before bottling, meaning that we have both the color and the benefits to the drinker alike.”
So now we know about the color. Let’s find out all about the taste!
The London No 1 Gin provided by brand representatives. All photos and opinions are my own unless otherwise stated.
The London No 1 Review
47% alcohol by volume | 94 proof | $39.99 price point | Color Certified
12 Key Botanicals: angelica root, orange peel, coriander, bergamot, cassia, savory, juniper of Dalmatia, lemon peel, almond, liquorice, lily root, and cinnamon
@thelondonn1 on Instagram | thelondon1.com
First Impressions: What’s not to love about the pale blue color?! It is fantastic! Like clear ocean waves lapping at the sea shore. The bottle is classic, of simple design with straight-forward label.
Color: Pale blue to pale turquoise. The color is calming like the gentle rocking of the sea. My immediate thought is find a hammock and enjoy the afternoon. But a drink to carry with me would be nice.
Aroma: Clean with lots of juniper on the nose. Delicate aromatics on the nose. No abrasive alcohol aroma.
Tasted Neat: There’s the burn! Light sweetness, with lots of juniper and floral notes. Hints of citrus and wee bit of spice.
Tasted with Ice: The aroma mellows out with the little bit of ice melted into the spirit. The texture is clean with just a bit of creaminess to it. There is still some burn, but not as much. Juniper, spice, and delicate floral sweetness come to the forefront.
Overall Impressions: The color had me from the beginning. The flavor is light with medium juniper flavor offset by the naturally light sweetness. Ideally I would use this in a classic Martini or Gin and Tonic to keep the beautiful calming blue hue. Today I decided upon something a little different rather than the tried and true martini.
The London No 1 Gin Over the Moon Cocktail Recipe
Though the color does little to highlight the natural color of The London No 1 Gin, the cocktail is still rather yummy. The ingredients are a cross between the Blue Moon and Aviation classic cocktails. Both of those are excellent so do try them. This combo of the two is nice and citrusy with warmth from the gin. It is best to drink this while it is still quite chilled. I let it sit too long while I took photographs and wrote down a few thoughts about it. It became a little syrupy after it warmed.
Over the Moon – recipe variation by Cheri Loughlin
1-1/2 ounce The London No 1 Gin
3/4 ounce Crème de Violette
1/2 ounce Cointreau Orange Liqueur
3/4 ounce Lemon Juice
Combine liquids in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake to chill. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Twist a fresh lemon peel over the drink to release the essential oils into the cocktail. Place lemon twist in the drink.
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Cheri Loughlin is the Omaha writer and photographer behind www.intoxicologist.net. Email Cheri with comments and questions at str8upcocktails at gmail.com.