Gin Botanical: Orange
Oranges; probably the most ubiquitous fruit in the world. Whether as a fruit, juice or flavouring, it gets everywhere. It’s pretty common in gin as well, often alongside lemon.
- Oranges mostly come in two varieties; the sweet orange, which is the type we usually eat as fruit, and the bitter orange (or Seville Orange), which is what we typically make marmalade and gin with (although some gins use sweet orange too).
- The orange is actually a hybrid, mostly likely between a pomelo and a mandarin, and has been cultivated for millennia.
- Orange is the most cultivate fruit tree in the world. Brazil and the US are the most prolific producers.
The aromas of the orange-heavy gin are dry and astringent – it’s like the smell-equivalent of the bitterness of orange peel. The actual smell that you associate with the fruit is there, but it’s very subtle and restrained.
It transpires that orange is a bit of a ride. The attack is sweet and swiftly develops into hints of orangey goodness. This then turns into a slightly bitter, tingly, burning, astringent mouth feel in the after-taste.
There’s a surprising amount of nose-resident body with this gin which is similar to the alcohol burn that you find with stronger gins, which makes me wonder how much of that alcohol burn actually comes from the citrus botanicals.
This being fresh orange peel, and not dried, there are fewer hints of marmalade. I quite like the marmalade flavours but the fresh peel has a freshness (well, duh) which dried peel lacks.