The Head Distiller at Animus, Sarah Wallace, has an impressive greenhouse on her farm near the Kyneton distillery. She's nurtured the Test Pressing series, which allows her to make small batches to trial new botanical recipes, and her recent obsession has brought her back to Animus's roots, and allowed native plants to take centre stage. This has also met the team's demand for a Gin designed specifically for a Martini, so Sarah has created something deliciously herbal and bold, which makes for an exceptionally robust drink when partnered with extra dry Vermouth and a dash of Manzanilla Sherry.
This new limited release gin boasts the most botanicals Animus has incorporated in a single Gin so far. The 24 flavours include ruby grapefruit zest, lemon scented gum and lemon myrtle (for zing), roasted wattle seed and macadamia nuts (for toast and body), anise myrtle, peppermint gum and native oregano (for fragrance), and pink peppercorn and mountain pepper leaf (for warmth). This is balanced with the further herbal/umami complexities provided by saltbush, clary sage, rosemary and lavender. It’s definitely the perfect Martini Gin, and when mixed the natives and juniper shine, with whispers of pine and acacia, saltbush and those coffee-like wattleseed notes.
It takes plenty of skill to balance this number of botanicals, and Sarah has absolutely nailed it!
A very pure oleo saccharum (sweet citrus oil) character on the nose. There’s a little pine-like juniper peeking through, while floral and leafy botanicals sit delicately in front. On the palate the gin is big and full, with heat, spice and sweetness up-front, rippling viscously over the tongue with layers of balanced botanical flavours, finishing bone-dry with a metallic/saline zing.