When it comes to drinks, there’s a few loves in my life. Clearly I love gin, but those who know me also know I have two other loves, wine (Its actually how my gin journey began) and coffee, which I just could not do without!
Morning coffee of course is a must, but for me only fresh coffee will do. Years living in countries like Portugal and Brazil, where my diet was made up of constant little shots of Espresso known as a Bica (A half shot like an Italian Ristretto), left me with a never waining appetite for great coffee.
So when I spotted that Sipsmith had launched a limited edition named Sipspresso, I just have to give it a try, and here are my thoughts.
Like all Sipsmith gins, there is no mistaking the bottle. They have built up a brand that is instantly distinguishable, so as someone with over 80 gins sitting on a shelf in the dining room, I’m a little embarrassed to admit that its a gin Ive always steered away from and for no other reason than because I want to try something different. I also have no excuse as I even have a miniature bottle of their London Dry sitting on the shelf (But then what use is a 50ml bottle if your trying something to review, one taste neat and you’ve not enough left for a proper measured G&T).
Opening the Sipspresso the gin is pretty classic on the nose, in fact I don’t pick up any notes of coffee at all. My partner who hates coffee (I know right!) reluctantly has a smell and she agrees, no coffee there, ‘it just smells like gin’, which lets face it, isn’t a bad start.
Maybe my expectation was wrong, but then again, this is only the first smell and from the bottle itself, so I’m not doing it justice. I pour a small measure into tasting glass to see what I can pick up from there.
When sampled properly in a tasting glass, the underlying notes definitely start to come through more. I start to pick up an almost chocolaty aroma with vanilla and aromatic spice and then I pick out a faint note of fresh coffee, not that strong roasted coffee smell, but something young and delicate.
On the palette neat the coffee definitely starts to come through more, it has a earthy yet fruity note to it, again not a rich espresso but more like a latte, or to be more exact, a spiced latte as it has a good complexity of vanilla and spices all of which are very restrained.
Next up I try the gin as a G&T, with 50ml Sipspresso and 150ml Light Tonic. the transformation is amazing. The flavours that were restrained and subdued, suddenly come to life, with the flavours of cacao having a new found prominence and a finish where the spices are allowed to linger.
Finally I just need to give it a go as an Espresso Martini. Whilst many of the flavours that found fame within the tonic are lost in the ‘Sipspresso Martini’, it still beings an added depth of character, with a hint of vanilla and chocolaty note still being present, for me its definitely a winner.
In conclusion, used as a sipping gin, even people that don’t like coffee would enjoy the smooth and complex gin, however mixed with tonic is where the coffee lovers will find there pleasure.
Name:- Sipsmith Sipspresso (Coffee Gin)
Price:- £29 (70cl)
Proof:- 37.5% abv
Buy From:- Sipsmith Website or Tesco