What is gin made from?
How to make gin the Humdinger way.
The one core ingredient that our Humdinger Gin is made from is the humble Juniper berry. This is what gives all gins their signature botanical flavour. The juniper berry is the fundamental botanical as you cannot have gin without juniper.
Fun fact: A juniper berry is the female seed cone produced by the various species of junipers. It is not a true berry but a cone with unusually fleshy and merged scales, which gives it a berry-like appearance. Juniper berries are among the only spices derived from conifers - (trees) hence the berry (or cone) has a slightly piney flavor with a touch of both fruitiness and pepperiness.
Every distiller has their own secret recipe! Some have been years in the making while other distillers like to experiment with new combinations. At the Humdigner Gin Distillery, we like to give our loyal customers consistency with our signature gins, such as the award-winning Dry Gin and The Citrus Gin. The recipes of these two gins need no further tinkering.
However, we do like to keep our gin interesting, by producing new flavours. This is achieved by endless trialing, testing, and tasting of various botanicals such as ginger, nutmeg, orris root, coriander seed to name a few. Just as well we are gin lovers too!
As Humdinger Gin is owner-operated, we are involved in every step of the process, and being perfectionists helps. We understand that authenticity and consistency counts. Our quality ingredients are essential to a quality gin.
How to make Gin.
The magic happens in the distilling process. There are three vital steps in the process.
Humdinger uses the cleanest neutral base spirit they can get their hands on, which is a neutral cane spirit. By legal definition, this must be at least 95 or 96% pure ethanol depending on what country you reside in. A clean alcohol is also critical for a clean-tasting gin.
Just like artists need a clean canvas to start from, Humdinger’s neutral cane spirit provides an extremely clean canvas on which to start layering deliberate botanical flavours. Our botanicals are precisely weighed and steeped in this alcohol for a day and a night, enticing elegant flavours and aromas out in preparation for distillation.
Adding the botanicals
This is the fun part! Where the gin becomes its full potential using our beautifully crafted stills. Exacting ingredients are added that compliment each other and bring out the different notes of the variety of botanicals that we use. In what proportions do we add these wonderful spices is top secret. You will be hard-pressed to find any distiller that will give up their secret recipes!
A fundamental step! We use the pristine water from the upper Orari River’s aquifer to dilute the gin off our stills down to bottling strength.
We don’t rush this process. We proof/dilute each gin down to its “sweet spot” where it’s still full of flavour yet smooth enough to enjoy neat - if you’re that way inclined!
Now we have answered your questions - what gin is made from? and how to make gin (sort of) now is a great time to taste the gin!
We do offer Gin tasting at our fine establishment where you can sample our range.
We are operating at Alert level Red To adhere to these restrictions, only one bubble at a time is permitted to the Gin tastings. This means there may be a wait if there is a bubble already doing tastings.