6 O’clock Gin review


It’s gin o’clock with 6 O’clock –

As you might guess, the name 6 O’clock Gin was inspired by the maker’s family tradition of imbibing a G&T at that very time – a custom enjoyed by us and fellow ‘gin-thusiasts’ across the world.  After all, it’s always 6 o’clock somewhere!

I first came across this gin, though, when travelling back from a work trip in London with my hubby, when we indulged in a late lunch on board what was then First Great Western’s express service from Paddington, down to the English Riviera and Plymouth.  But rather than offering the Devon Naval Port’s local distillation, the very attentive dining car staff explained they had a new spirit we could try while perusing the menu.

And instead of admiring the stunning views available from Brunel’s historic coastal track along the sea wall near Dawlish, while I was getting my initial taste of 6 O’clock Gin I was instead confronted by a dismal concrete landscape as the train headed towards Reading at around 1-30 in the afternoon.  No matter how drab the vista, however, it definitely did not detract from the colorful tapestry of flavours being woven across my tongue.

Isambard Kingdom Brunel

London, for all its beautiful buildings, buzz and cosmopolitan commerce is a noisy, grimy and polluted place.  That G&T, though, swept it all clean, getting us ready for our salmon and prawn starters; and I’ve enjoyed several since then, heading west from the capital.

6 O’clock Gin is, thankfully, much smoother than the train ride, which is surprising considering its 43% strength.  More recently, at home, I tried it neat and the angelica botanical was pronounced; but oddly, more so when I added the tonic.

Next came the subtle hint of elderflowers, which took me back to my childhood when I would pick them for my parents wine-making: having the fun of using a fork to separate the flower heads, and speed up the process.  I still remember the tannin smell vividly as the flowers boiled; not nearly as pleasant a bouquet as 6 O’clock Gin!

The signature smoothness that defines this gin flows from ‘Kathleen’, a unique ‘double sphere’ copper pot still.  The spirit thereby benefits from prolonged contact with copper during distillation and, according to the makers, “only the pure heart of each run makes the cut.”  Together these conditions create the strikingly smooth 6 O’clock experience for all to enjoy.

Would I buy this gin again?  Oh yes, if not only to remind me of tucking into the tenderest of fillet steaks on the train journey back to Devon, then to ‘share the moment’ with friends.

“it’s always 6 o’clock somewhere”