Monday 25 July 2011

Update from the Lab..#6 Eastern Promise Gin - Update with Tasting Notes!

It's amazing what you can learn on Twitter. Today alone, I've learnt that some folks are aeging gin for over ten years and that one of their varieties is bottled at a heady 67.4% ABV! But perhaps the most interesting conversation today led me to a little experiment. One tweeter is off on holiday to Turkey and I suggested they look out for Gin Istanbul (a juniper spirit made in the country that spans two continents). This led to a lighthearted comment by the Gin Monkey that she imagined it would taste like Turkish Delight. After some discussion on the merits of this, I am proud to present:

Sipsmith Turkish Delight Gin

I decided to use Sipsmith as it a very characterful gin, with a heavy dose of juniper; therefore, it should stand up to the sweet rose flavours of the confection.
I also decided to use powdered sugar Turkish Delight (Sultan's), rather than the chocolate covered variety (Fry's); I thought that the addition of chocolate would be too much and is perhaps an experiment for another day.

#1) Remove the powdered sugar from the Turkish Delight (lest the gin be too sweet)*
#2) Cut the Turkish Delight into smaller pieces; this increases the surface area (a point that I'm sure is not lost on the plethora of biologists that read this site).**
#3) Add Turkish Delight to a pot/jam jar (I used 4 pieces)
#4) Add Sipsmith Gin (200ml)***
#5) Wait... (For about 24 hours)
#6) Strain, I just used a tea strainer and I discarded the last 10% from my bottling as it had a heavy sediment.

I only started this today, so it's not ready yet, but rest assured that, when it is, you will receive an update, and an Eastern Promise Martini will be yours for the making.

The Long-awaited Results!

Nose: certainly of rose with a slight gelatinous quality (maybe by association rather than anything else) as well as juniper and citrus.
Taste: Initially sweet rose and then the dry more bitter notes from the gin, juniper and coriander. Medium to long finish of juniper and Turkish Delight. I'm please to say it wasn't too sweet and that the flavour really comes through.

The gin-soaked Turkish delight pieces were rather tasty although incredibly intense, I'm glad I had Mrs B. to help me eat them.

Gin & Tonic
Although the gin is a light yellow in the bottle with tonic it becomes ever so slightly pink. In this drink the flavour of the gin is much more subtle, but it is still there. It is as if some mysterious beauty had just softly brushed your arm and you've taken in a waft of her perfume.**** But it is more delicate and quite intriguing.

A light parchment yellow, the flavours of Turkish delight come over well, I can imagine this would be very similar to Will's marvelous creation. Possibly my favourite way to drink the Turkish Delight Gin.

* You could do this by licking the sugar off, but I decided to rinse it with filtered water instead—just as effective and probably less offensive.
** Turkish Delight is notoriously difficult to cut up, so be careful and, if you're having trouble, ask an adult to help you.
*** Other gins are available. I imagine something like SW4 would also work well.
**** I guess this suggests that they've been dabbing Sultan's (or gin) behind their ears?


  1. At the last Candlelight Club Will came up with a cocktail inspired by roses: in practice it was a dry Martini with added rose syrup (Monin do a nice one) and cardamom. It's delicious, and immediately reminded me of Turkish Delight. And possibly easier than trying to dissolve actual Turkish delight in gin!

  2. I agree the Monin one is pretty good (good to make ice cream with)but ease is not in the vocabularly of the South-coast lab team (really I wanted to eat gin-soaked Turkish Delight!)I can update that after 6 hours the gin has already taken on a lot of character from the Turkish Delight. I reckon a total of 24 hours will do it.

  3. I'm with David. I really want to eat the Turkish Delight. That alone sounds spectacular.

  4. If you cut the Turkish delight up with scissors before you lick off the sugar, you will have less mess.

  5. Any news on this? I have a feeling that since Turkish delight uses cornflour as its gelling agent, you may end up with a rather gloopy concoction as it dissolves into the gin.

  6. I should imagine you can achieve something very similar with rose water and gomme; this will probably result in a cleaner end-product - although you won't get to eat gin-soaked turkish delight at the end of it all, and it won't be so much fun.

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  8. Wow that's a wonderfull blog having all details & helpful. turkish delight recipe