Disclosure: sample bottle of The Lakes Pink Grapefruit Gin sent by the distillery for review. Opinions entirely that of the author.
The Lakes Pink Grapefruit Gin
Launched in April 2020, The Lakes Distillery made their first foray into full-strength flavoured gin with their Pink Grapefruit expression. It follows a successful reformulation and rebrand of their flagship London Dry, six months previously.
Read my review to find out all you need to know about The Lakes Pink Grapefruit Gin.
Inspired by the signature serve
While we’re starting to see fewer new brands, the number of new gins doesn’t appear to be slowing up at all. Established brands seem to be bringing out new gins with increasing regularity, hoping to take a bigger share of the market.
Following the release of their reformulated Classic Gin, The Lakes Distillery launched a Pink Grapefruit expression in April 2020, inspired by the signature serve of their flagship gin (you can read my review of the Classic Gin here).
The Lakes Pink Grapefruit features the same 9 botanicals found in the sister expression – juniper, coriander, angelica, orris root, cassia bark, liquorice, bitter orange, sweet orange and lemon peel. Unlike many other flavoured gins on the market, it also packs a punch, being bottled at the same ABV of 46%.
The packaging also follows the same blueprint as the Classic Gin, featuring the same beautiful bottle created by Glasgow-based creative agency, D8. It took almost a year of working with the agency on the rebrand and the results are simply stunning.
There are subtle differences in design, with a red label, instead of white, and transparent glass as opposed to the blue tint on the original. This allows for the pink hue of the gin to shine through. Both are stunning, but my personal preference is the Classic Gin. There’s something cleaner about it and more elegant in its simplicity.
Built on their Classic Gin
The Lakes Pink Gin is made using the same process as the reformulated Classic Gin, but with an additional step.
Nine botanicals (juniper, coriander, angelica, orris root, cassia bark, liquorice, bitter orange, sweet orange and lemon peel) are macerated in warm wheat spirit overnight, allowing the essential oils to be delicately released. The next day distillation takes place at a slow pace using a traditional copper pot.
You may have noticed that grapefruit doesn’t appear in the botanical mix. Instead, to give the gin it’s pink grapefruit profile, natural flavourings are added after distillation. Crucially, no sweeteners are added to the gin.
More gin reviews
Juniper, coriander, angelica, orris root, cassia bark, liquorice, bitter orange, sweet orange and lemon peel
On the nose, despite the huge smack of zingy citrus from the pink grapefruit, backstage you can tell this is built on the Classic Gin. Underneath the zest, you get the notes of juniper and pepper, which are more at the forefront of its elder sibling.
To sip neat, it’s a far more balanced affair, which I wasn’t expecting from the nose. There’s no doubt the pink grapefruit is the star of the show, but there’s still a good amount of juniper swirling about my cheeks, followed by a warm citrus finish. Despite its heady 46% ABV, it doesn’t feel it, with little burn. Really smooth!
On the nose, despite the huge smack of zingy citrus from the pink grapefruit, backstage you can tell this is built on the Classic Gin.
While the Lakes Pink Grapefruit is lovely neat, being inspired by the signature serve of their Classic Gin, you’d expect this to be made for a G&T. And that is certainly the case.
The distillery recommends Fever-Tree Mediterranean Tonic, which as it happens, is my go-to tonic and it works beautifully with the zesty grapefruit of the gin. As you’d expect, the juniper takes more of a backseat here, making the citrus really shine, and the peppery notes die away to a distant echo.
The Lakes Pink Grapefruit makes for an incredibly refreshing gin and tonic, perfect for those summer evenings in the garden. Such is its flavour profile, the distillery recommended no garnish and I’d definitely go along with that here. The grapefruit is the star of the show, and doesn’t need anything to compliment or enhance what’s already there.
While pink grapefruit is the dominant flavour, it retains much of what I love about the Classic Gin and makes a beautifully refreshing G&T. That being said, the original would still be my preference of the two.
With two new full-strength gins in some of the most beautiful packaging you’re likely to see, I’m expecting big things in the coming years from The Lakes Distillery.
“With juniper present in the flavour profile and no sweeteners it adds to the growing list of gins which, in my opinion, will appeal to both purists and the flavoured market alike.”
Where is The Lakes Pink Grapefruit Gin made?
The Lakes Pink Grapefruit Gin is distilled in The Lake District National Park, Cumbria.
What is the best way to serve The Lakes Pink Grapefruit Gin?
The Lakes Pink Grapefruit Gin is best enjoyed in a gin and tonic, with no garnish. Fever-Tree MediterraneanTonic is recommended by the distillery.
How much does The Lakes Pink Grapefruit Gin? cost?
Expect to pay around about £33 RRP.
Is any sweetener added to The Lakes Pink Grapefruit Gin?
There are no sweeteners in The Lakes Pink Grapefruit Gin.