Botanical Spirit
Botanical Spirit

Nc'nean Botanical Spirit image 1

Nc'nean Botanical Spirit

Words by Simon Difford

I'm a huge fan of distilled botanical spirits, made in exactly the same way as gin but importantly without gin's legal requirement for juniper to be the dominant botanical or for the base distillate to be neutral. This opens a world of opportunity for spirit creation, one embraced by Annabel Thomas and her team at Nc'nean.

Nc'nean Botanical Spirit is based on the new-make spirit produced using their "Young" whiskey recipe and this is redistilled with botanicals in a copper pot still using the same steep and boil process used to make gin, hence Nc'nean take their spirit to a gin distillery for this second distillation.

Annabel says "The funny thing about making a botanical spirit, is when you start with new make you have to have a super heavy botanical recipe, you just physically need a lot of them, way way more than a typical gin recipe because they're competing with something that already has lots of flavour." Nc'nean's botanical recipe was inspired by Scotland's west coast and its development was helped by Heriot-Watt University. It comprises 1o botanicals: juniper, coriander, angelica, liquorice, chamomile, grapefruit, bog myrtle, thyme, sorrel, and heather.