Long distance relationships often result in disastrous endings, but every now and again the world is treated with the exception that proves the disheartening rule — a rare glimpse into what glorious achievements can be born from “Love, Obsession and some degree of Madness.” In the case of Martin Miller’s Gin, the world of premium spirits has its exception.
A lovechild brought into existence by the consummation of resources between Englandand Iceland, Martin Miller’s Gin reminds us why striving for the best is not only admirable, but ultimately necessary when vying for the spotlight in a spirit-saturated world filled with Ciroc-stars and hyperbolic mixologists.
The good people of Martin Miller’s Gin actually make two types of gin. Like brothers, the two are similar (both contain the same ingredients of juniper, coriander, angelica, licorice root, cassia bark, Florentine iris, orange peel, lemon peel and lime peel), but are defined by what sets them apart.
London Style Dry Gin
The first is the London Dry Style Gin, which was originally distilled in 1998 and officially offered to the public in 1999. It boasts a citrus nose and mouth with notes of juniper coming through half way before a soft finish. The older brother, Martin Miller’s London Dry Style Gin is calm and smooth — a great gin for vodka lovers looking to sail further into the sea of clear spirits.
Westbourne Strength Gin
The Westbourne Strength is the other variant and is the newer, bolder and more potent of the two gins. Developed in 2002 in response to knowledgeable bartenders looking for a higher-proof version of the gin, the Westbourne Strength uses the same botanicals as the 80 proof London Dry Style; however, at 90 proof, it has more legs and is ideal for cocktails of a higher complexity. The notes of juniper are noticeably, and necessarily, more present in this version and the mouth is richer and spicier.
The underlying current which carries both of these gins into the upper echelon is of course the Icelandic water. According to David Bromige, founding director of Martin Miller’s Gin, the water is truly what gives the spirit life. “The water … has been filtering through lava rocks for some 800 years. Most water that goes into spirits is de-ionized, lifeless. This naturally filtered water retains its vivacity, its surface tension.”
Martin Miller’s Gin President Jacob Ehrenkrona continued on the importance of water, adding that even the ice cubes one puts in their gin is of the utmost importance. “Since we take such care in selecting the water, you need to use quality ice cubes and keep them as cold as possible.” It might sound extreme, but why would you want to tarnish an exceptional gin by diluting with unexceptional water?
It’s a simple concept really. Pure water begets pure gin. All you have to do is travel to Iceland to get it.