Most of us know that botanicals are a key element of gin. But what exactly are botanicals and why are they so important to the taste of gin?
Botanicals are the herbs, spices, and other ingredients that give gin its flavour. In order for a spirit to be classified as gin, one of those botanicals must be juniper. Aside from juniper, however, the different botanical combinations you’ll find in gin are almost limitless. Gin distillers have the freedom to get creative and blend together various botanicals to develop intriguing taste experiences. It’s why the types of gin you’ll encounter tend to be so diverse.
Botanicals are also essential to making Sobrii an ideal non-alcoholic gin. Sobrii uses a classic combination of botanicals and a similar distillation process to traditional gin. The botanicals are macerated in alcohol and undergo multiple distillations before the alcohol is removed using a proprietary process. The result is a non-alcoholic spirit that you can easily substitute into your favourite gin cocktails.
Let’s take a closer look at the botanicals featured in Sobrii and explore how they contribute to its gin-like flavour.
Juniper is the all-important botanical that defines gin. It’s so essential that the term “gin” is said to be derived from the Dutch word for juniper: genever. Not only is juniper a crucial component for a spirit to be classified as gin, but it also imparts the piney notes that we associate with all gin. Juniper therefore helps to give Sobrii a flavour that’s similar to traditional gin.
Although coriander is not a required botanical, it’s estimated to be the second most common ingredient in gin after juniper. Coriander is the dried seed of the cilantro plant and originally comes from Southern Europe, Northern Africa, and Southwest Asia. The taste of coriander is quite nuanced, and you’ll usually notice it more prominently towards the end of a sip. It adds subtle spicy, citrusy, and nutty notes to both traditional gin and Sobrii that nicely complement the more herbal taste of juniper.
Allspice and star anise
You won’t find allspice and star anise in every gin, making them part of what gives Sobrii its unique taste. Allspice adds a warm note that evokes a combination of nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves. Star anise brings a slightly sweet element reminiscent of black licorice.
A star anise pod can make a lovely garnish for a non-alcoholic gin and tonic cocktail made with Sobrii, helping to enhance the warm spice aspects of Sobrii’s flavour.
Ginseng is another select botanical that helps shape Sobrii’s distinctive flavour. For centuries, ginseng has been used in Chinese medicine and in First Nations cultures for its array of health benefits. Ginseng is associated with reduced inflammation, improved memory and mood, immune system strength, increased energy, and lowered blood sugar, among other positive effects.
In addition to its potential health benefits, ginseng adds a pleasant, earthy note to Sobrii. The ginseng used in Sobrii is sourced locally, helping to create a distinctly Canadian taste profile that allows Sobrii to blend beautifully into almost any traditional gin cocktail.