A dear friend of mine has been touring the country in various plays for quite some years now, and in doing so discovered the Stone Pine Distillery in Bathurst. He’d been telling me about this wonderful gin for a year or so before he was back in the region and had the chance to pick up a bottle for me. It was worth the wait.
Originally from Scotland, Bev and Ian Glen founded their mircodistillery in 2006. Bev’s background is in hospitality, while Ian is a biochemist and is an Associate Member of the Institute of Brewing & Distilling, so they make a great team.
I’m excited about the emergence of some terrific Australian gins using native botanicals. (I have quite a few on my reviews to do list.) Overall they are punchy and flavoursome.
Stone Pine Dry gin is pot distilled, the website says they gently infuse their botanicals, but it does not specify if it is vapour distilled or macerated then distilled. Based on the wording I would guess vapour distilled.
There is no indication of what is used in the spirit base, but the describes Ian Glen’s background is brewing whisky so I’d guess that he is using a grain spirit base.
They call the style ‘new world’ which I guess is another way of saying New Western, though it owes a lot to the London Dry style too.
They are a bit secretive about the botanical ingredients, describing a proprietary of native and traditional botanicals. There is definitely juniper and some earthy herb tones, and also some quite hot spicy notes. They use a lot of finger lime in their other products so it’s quite possible the citrusy top notes come courtesy of the delicious native finger lime.
Unsurprisingly Stone Pine has a strong pine aroma with clean ethanol and juniper. On the palate it is full-flavoured with juniper and hot spice dominating. There is a subtle hint of a citrus top note.
Mixed with Fever Tree tonic it’s a full and loud drink with a lot of complexity. The tonic dampens the hot spice and opens up the slightly sweet citrus top notes. While it doesn’t of the clean softness of a classic London Dry, it is an interesting and vibrant gin and tonic. They offer gift packs of the dry gin with Capi tonic water, which is an excellent Australian product. It’s so good to see a distillery committing to good tonic water.
What others say
I haven’t been able to find any other reviews of Stone Pine dry gin, if you stumble upon any, do let me know. Or if you have the chance to try it, I’d love to know what you think.