Salcombe Gin Launches New Voyager Series ‘Island Queen’ In Collaboration With Monica Galetti
Steeped in heritage and provenance, Salcombe Gin has released the latest addition to its award-winning Voyager Series, ‘Island Queen’. This new exceptional gin has been developed in collaboration with acclaimed chef Monica Galetti and is named after a famous Salcombe Fruit Schooner from the 19th century fruit trade.
The ‘Island Queen’, which was built in Salcombe in 1853, braved the harshest of conditions in its quest for enticing tropical fruits and botanicals, with the ultimate prize at that time being the pineapple.
Monica Galetti, who is perhaps best known as judge on MasterChef: The Professionals and is half of the husband and wife duo behind Mere in Fitzrovia, comments: “I’m so excited to be working with Salcombe Gin to create a gin for their fantastic Voyager Series. I’ve been a fan of their signature gin for a while and loved the quality so much I serve it at the bar of my restaurant Mere. When Salcombe Gin approached me, I thought this was the perfect opportunity to create a gin that reflected my culinary style and heritage in the Pacific Islands. The gin is truly tropical, inspired by the ocean with notes of freshly cut pineapple, sweet mango and coconut in perfect balance with traditional juniper.”
Monica continues: “I wanted a name that would reflect the trading history of all the incredible fruits and botanicals brought to the UK and found ‘Island Queen’, one of the Salcombe Fruiters, and knew that would be the perfect fit! Using the finest ingredients, along with Salcombe Gin’s exceptional distilling knowledge, I feel we’ve created a gin I’m really proud to put my name to.”
Angus Lugsdin, co-founder of Salcombe Gin, comments: “It is a huge privilege to be working with Monica on this collaborative Voyager Series gin. Monica is such a talented chef and immediately understood what we were trying to achieve. With the incredible history linking Salcombe to the pineapple trade and the tropical influences in Monica’s cooking it could not have been a more exciting partnership, which has resulted in a highly distinguished gin for our portfolio.”
‘Island Queen’ is a rich, balanced and totally tropical gin with freshly cut pineapple, sweet mango and coconut on the nose at first followed by waves of green citrus and a hint of manuka wood smoke and spice to finish. The palate is bursting with fresh pineapple, tropical lime and fruity spice from pink peppercorns. Traditional juniper provides structure in the background partnered with the rich earthiness of angelica and green cardamom. The finish is lingering with sweet smokiness offset by the freshness of the lime. The tropical fruits are ever present but beautifully balanced with the more traditional gin botanicals.
To capture the tropical aromas and enticing flavours of the Caribbean and South Pacific, the fresh pineapples were at first slow roasted and smoked over manuka wood in a traditional Kamado oven, before steeping the flesh in English wheat spirit for 72 hours. The cooking process helped break down the cell walls in the pineapple allowing the flavour compounds to be more readily released into the alcohol. The pineapple infused base spirit was then distilled along with the remainder of the botanicals and Dartmoor water according to the London Dry Standard on ‘Provident’, a traditional Arnold Holstein 450l copper pot still.
Angus continues: “By steeping the pineapples in the base spirit, we have captured the freshness of this magnificent fruit along with the sweet smokiness from the manuka wood. The mango and fresh lime peel add further tropical notes along with a green freshness and subtle anise. Macedonian juniper is used in the same quantity as our flagship ‘Start Point’ gin and provides a foundation on which to build the flavours and aromas with the green cardamom again helping lengthen the finish on the palate.”
Salcombe Gin Voyager Series ‘Island Queen’ is the fourth in a collection of limited edition gins developed in collaboration with world-renowned chefs or iconic winemakers, each of which reflect their individual personality and style. The Voyager Series commenced with ‘Arabella’, created in partnership with Michael Caines MBE, followed by ‘Mischief’ in collaboration with Mark Hix MBE and ‘Guiding Star’, a partnership with Niepoort. Salcombe Gin Voyager Series ‘Mischief’ has just been awarded ‘World’s Best Gin Design’ in The World Gin Awards 2019 and ‘Arabella’ has been named ‘Best New Launch Design’.
Limited to 2,500 bottles, ‘Island Queen’ is presented in a stunning white ceramic bottle made in the UK featuring an embossed outline of the iconic gin pennant and a bespoke debossed copper stopper commissioned for this series. The label is in striking yellow, reflecting the vibrant pineapple characteristics of the gin.
Salcombe Gin Voyager Series ‘Island Queen’: a collaboration with Monica Galetti is priced at £65 per 50cl bottle. Available online at salcombegin.com, from the Salcombe Gin Distillery and Victuallers, Fortnum & Mason, Harvey Nichols, Selfridges and at selected independent retailers. Monica will also be serving ‘Island Queen’ at her restaurant, Mere, Fitzrovia, London.
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