Portobello Road Gin review

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“A Capital Bracer!”

It does what it says on the tin – or, in the case of Portobello Road Gin, on the bottle, for this 42London Dry is crafted at No 171 on the famous street it is named after: notable for its markets proffering second-hand clothes and antiques.

In 2011, nestled above an old drinking den on the bustling thoroughfare, four longtime friends – Ged, Jake, Paul and Tom – decided, after amassing an impressive collection of gin and alcoholic artifacts, to open The Ginstitute, which became home to their 30L copper pot Still, called Copernicus the Second.  It was here that, after nine months of experimentation, Portobello Road Gin was born.

“The gents, all ex-bartenders, were keen to create a spirit that was uniquely versatile & have a depth of character to suit all occasions & libations; an intensity that stands up in a Negroni, enough elegance to work in a Martini yet settle nicely with a tonic.”

And the lads have succeeded in their aim to produce a gin that works as well in a Martini, Negroni or simply as a G&T – for Portobello Road Gin is easy to drink neat or in a cocktail, being peppery to the nose, reliably junipery in the mouth, and with a very pleasing, clean citrusy finish.  As Master of Malt states, “an excellent, no-nonsense gin.”

Juniper, Coriander, Angelica and Orris roots, Lemon and Orange peel, Liquorice root, Cassia bark and – one of my favourites – Nutmeg, make up this classic London Dry gin.

Even if you’ve never been to London before, the market stores, bars and famous blue doors of Portobello Road would be immediately familiar.  You’ll have seen its market playing host to Paddington Bear and the cast of the 1971 Disney classic ‘Bedknobs and Broomsticks’, in which the street even got its own theme song.  Portobello Road retains much of that magic, mystery and romance today.  After a bit of mooching around, you can end the day with a visit to The Ginstitute to try some of the spirit – and even have a go making your own.

The recommended serve for Portobello Road gin is with tonic and a twist of Grapefruit.

Portobello Road gin is widely available from most supermarkets, at around £25.00 for a 70cl bottle

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