Bloom Gin

A recent trip to Waitrose revealed a greatly expanded gin range gracing their shelves. Alongside their normal gins were No. 3 Gin (which is fantastic news as it gives me somewhere local to buy it), Chase Gin and Bloom. Two new gins to choose from; the decision really came down to cost as I already had too much in the trolley.

Bloom Gin

Bloom Gin

Bloom gin has been on my radar for some time as I like floral elements in my gin, so it was with some excitement that I took it home.

Produced by Joanne Moore, (reputed to be the world’s only female master distiller, although I am not sure what Lesley Gracie, Master Distiller at Hendrick’s would say about that), Bloom forms part of the Greenall’s portfolio of spirits.

It is said by many that Bloom gin is obviously aimed at the female market due to it light floral notes and bottle design, but I rather like the bottle with its Art Nouveau vine-work and its tall elegance. Maybe I am just in-touch with my feminine-side.

The thing that marks Bloom gin out in the market is its botanical list…

  • Juniper
  • Coriander
  • Angelica
  • Cubeb Berries
  • Chamomile
  • Honeysuckle
  • Pomelo

There is a core of traditional botanicals there, but more than half of them are not usually found in gin.

Uncorking (yes it is stoppered with a cork) and sniffing the neck of the bottle punished me with a rather unpleasant scent of wet earth and slight mouldy/musty smells. Wiping around the inside of the neck with a clean damp cloth eliminated the smell and replacing the cork with one I had kicking around saw it banished for good. I assume this bottle was corked but luckily these unsavoury scents didn’t seem to taint the gin.

Pouring a little into a glass and sticking my nose in for a good lung-full revealed a slight alcohol smell and mild botanicals – generic fruitiness and very faintly floral. Bloom’s nose is certainly light on the juniper.

Sipping the neat product rewards the mouth with a smooth but undistinguished gin. The juniper is light, constrained, almost absent and there is a undefined slight citrus taste but little of the anticipated floral notes. There was an underpinning taste of alcohol that, while not powerful, was a major contributor to the overall taste.

Mixing up my standard G&T (1:4 with Fever-Tree) drove off distinctly floral and citrus notes. In the mouth, the Pomelo was  in evidence but the floral aspects were hard to find. The juniper was weak and the all-in-all, the gin was somewhat lost.

Mixing stronger and stronger G&Ts eventually lead to a ratio that suited this gin. A 1:2 ratio allows this gin to shine and combines well with the tonic water. The floral notes really begin to come to the fore but I was unable to isolate honeysuckle (odd given that I have tonnes of the stuff in the garden and thought it would be instantly recognisable) or chamomile (another very distinctive taste/scent that dominates Tanqueray 10); the floral notes reminded me of a slightly softer version of geranium. There is a sweet fruity citrus undercurrent running through this gin and overall it reminded me of a slightly watered-down Whitley Neill; much less in the juniper department.

While the stronger G&T was very pleasant, I kept coming back to the similarities with Whitley Neill and how it doesn’t quite cut it in comparison.

For people who enjoy lighter gins, Bloom should be a great choice. If you like heavy-hitting monsters of juniper, you might want to give it a miss. I can imagine this gin working very well with elderflower but sadly, I had run out of both cordial and St Germain.


4 thoughts on “Bloom Gin

  • November 20, 2011 at 10:56 pm

    I thought I would love these kinds of gin until I tried G’Vine Floraison. The grape blossom they have added to it honestly is not very pleasant, it’s got a faint taste of banana to it and others I can’t describe and I don’t like it. In fact, after making a bunch of G&Ts and Greyhounds with it over the course of a week or so it ended up being sickly.

    I do wonder how all these other ones compare to it, though. I’m presently more of a mind to try the more traditional ones with a reputation for being well-made, considering that there’s actually both Sipsmith and Sacred gin available here now.

    • November 21, 2011 at 8:47 am

      It must be said, I have yet to cross paths with G’Vine, but the more gins I try, the more I find that my tastes lay along more traditional lines. Maybe this is the way of gin – there are an increasing number of avenues of entry, but all roads lead towards the more traditional gins at the centre, where the massive temple of juniper towers over the landscape,

      I try to mix up the traditional and nouveaux, the expensive and cheap – this blog is all about a voyage of discovery and while I may get to know my own preferences more and more, I feel I need to constantly challenge that. It was, after all, a challenge to the norm of real ale and whiskey drinking that bought me to gin in the first place.

      Sipsmith is a fabulous gin and I need to get some Sacred to get a better appreciation of it (I tried it at a tasting and it seemed good, but nothing beats drinking a bottle over the course of many days to build a more complete picture). There are some great gins out there that do depart from the norm though; Whitley Neill and Tanqueray 10 are the obvious choices for me, but the thing that they both retain, is a strong central core of juniper.

  • January 15, 2012 at 4:20 pm

    I am finding myself on one page with dug here, I believe.
    A traditional gin is often a torch for quality and craftsmenship. Up to date interpretations of gin can be absolutely fine, they might me long on creativity or even excitement but a bit short on complexity and panache.
    I don’t drink any other alcohol than gin. And I never have. Weirdly I started out with Bombay Sapphire, which in about one year turned boring and unexciting for my tastebuds. This Bloom came across my eyes two months ago and maaaaan was I tempted to get it. In Germany it is hard to find and quite costly. So I spent the same money on a bottle of London No.1 and I don’t feel any regret yet.

    • January 15, 2012 at 8:15 pm

      To me, Bloom is one of those gins that really highlights the differences in people’s tastes. Loads of gin aficionados really like the stuff, but it left me a bit bored. It is worth trying at some point, just in case you are one of the many that disagree with me.

      I have yet to try No.1. I see it in the supermarket when I am in London, but there have always been other gins higher up the priority list. Came really close a few times though.


Leave a Reply to Xavier Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>