Bartenders from around the city filed into the W Hotel at Union Square yesterday for gin school. Sponsored by Plymouth and Beefeater, the Gin Symposium featured a tasting of 10 different gins, as well as presentations from various bartenders from around New York and London on how to use the spirit in cocktails. One of the day’s main events was a preview of Beefeater’s upcoming release, a seasonal gin called Beefeater Summer, planned for a June launch. Master distiller Desmond Payne incorporated summery floral botanicals into Beefeater’s original recipe for the Summer bottling, including hibiscus, elderflower, and black currant leaves.
“I wouldn’t dare change [the original] recipe and it’s not my job to do that,” he says. “On the back of the success of Beefeater 24 (a premium gin launched last year), we looked at a seasonal variation. We’ve bottled it weaker: it’s 80 proof. It’s quite aimed at the consumer. Just top it up with cranberry juice, or maybe some fresh fruit… whatever you like.”
Might this be the first of a series of seasonal gins from the distiller?
“Who knows! We’ll see how Summer gin goes first.”
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