The perfect gift for gin lovers

We see it time and again; a new gin launches with a stunning bottle and it helps catapult it to the top of our “must-have” list. In the age of Instagram, a beautiful bottle is now almost essential in cutting through the hugely crowded marketplace.

As a result, packaging is now often at the forefront of product launches and we’ve seen incredible concepts in recent years. But to create that perfect bottle comes at a huge cost which is often not within the reach of brands as they start out.

A bottle is no longer a single-use item either but upcycled into vases, lamps, and more. Whether you’re looking for a gift for gin lovers or a treat for yourself, these bottles are sure to catch the eye!

Nordés Gin bottle, with a gin and tonic, garnished with grapes.

41. NORDÉS GIN

SPAIN

Photo: © From the Gin Shelf

The bottle design is inspired by traditional ceramics of Sargadelos from the gin’s home in Galicia. Synonymous with utilising singular designs and white and blue colours, Nordés mirror these designs expertly to create a bottle instantly recognisable as their own.

Read my review of Nordés Gin.

Tyree Gin bottle on a beach.

40. TYREE GIN

SCOTLAND

Photo: © Tyree Gin

The first of many island gins on the list is Tyree Gin. Created by Glasgow-based consultancy O Street, it focuses on a clean design using two of Tyree Gin’s main botanicals – kelp and machair –  marrying the land and sea with a simplistic turquoise and charcoal hand-drawn type marque. A really stunning design in its simplicity.

Kirkjuvagr Storm Gin bottle sitting on its side on top of a rope.

39. KIRKJUVAGR STORM NAVY STRENGTH GIN

SCOTLAND

Photo: © Kirkjuvagr Gin

{Sample gifted previously]

Ever since I was a small boy, I’ve always been fascinated by the Vikings. Perhaps that’s why I’m so drawn to the packaging of Kirkjuvagr, particularly their navy strength gin – “Storm”.

Angelica, one of the key botanicals in the gin, has strong Norse-connections, and was brought to Orkney by the legendary seafairers. The branding is instantly recognisable as Viking and helps to create a product which is true to the island’s heritage, and unmistakably Orcadian.

Tarquin's Gin bottle sitting on a rock with the sea in the background.

38. TARQUIN’S CORNISH GIN

ENGLAND

Photo: © Tarquin’s GIn

Tarquin’s Gin has always had a really pretty bottle. With its signature wax finish, it’s one that stood out. In August 2018, to mark the 5th anniversary, the bottle went to a whole new level.

The sea glass design – “a tactile and emotive nod to the Cornish provenance” – really is beautiful and further adds to what is, a truly great gin.

Martin Miller's Gin bottle in the snow.

37. MARTIN MILLER’S GIN

ENGLAND

Photo: © From the Gin Shelf

Martin Miller’s Gin was one of the frontrunners of the gin revival. Launched in 1999, it remains a  ‘must-have’ gin to this day. 

The bottle itself is cleverly styled. With transparent glass, the designs on the front and back of the bottle work in tandem, showing the location of where it’s distilled (England) and the journey it makes to add the pure waters of Iceland that are synonymous with the brand.

Read my review of Martin Miller’s Gin

Red Door Gin bottle.

36. RED DOOR GIN

SCOTLAND

Photo: © The Gin Cooperative

After 120 years of distilling whisky, Benromach Distillery in Speyside turned their hand to gin in July 2018. Taking its name and bottle design from the distinctive doors on the distillery, it makes for a striking red bottle.

Around its neck you’ll find the doors themselves and if you look closely, their resident distillery cat.

King of Soho Gin bottle.

35. KING OF SOHO GIN

ENGLAND

Photo: © King of Soho Gin 

King of Soho’s imagery is created to represent both modern and historic London life. 

The enigmatic figure is the centrepiece of the design, whose velvet suit depicts the “hedonistic fashion” of Soho, while the fox represents the area’s history as a royal hunting ground. Finally, Soho’s musical and cultural heritage is characterised by the open book and trumpet.

Bathtub Gin bottle next to a cocktail.

34. ABLEFORTH’S BATHTUB GIN

ENGLAND

Photo: © Ableforth’s

Hand-wrapped in paper, sealed with twine and wax, Ableforth’s Bathtub Gin is one of the more unique bottles on the market. Reminiscent of an old apothecary medicine bottle, its design takes inspiration from the prohibition era, said to have given rise to the term from which Bathtub Gin takes its name.

The branding also works well across Bathtub Gin’s sister spirits, each with their own unique illustration and copy.

tobermory gin bottle and a gin and tonic, with Mull in the background.

33. Tobermory Gin

Scotland

 Photo: © Tobermory Distillery

Launched in 2019, Tobermory Gin draws on over 200 years of history, being distilled in one of Scotland’s oldest commercial whisky distilleries.

The bottle takes inspiration from its hometown on the Isle of Mull. Known for its colourfully painted buildings along the main street to the pier, these quaint icons of the town no longer solely travel the globe on postcards, and are now found on gin shelves across world. 

Kokoro Gin bottle.

32. KOKORO GIN

ENGLAND

 Photo: © Kokoro Gin

{Sample gifted previously]

Kokoro Gin has a beautifully simple design and packaging. The gin is made using sancho berries from Japan’s Afan Woodland. Kokoro means “heart” in Japanese,  and the gin is so-called due to founder James Nichol’s belief that it transports you to the heart of the forest.

The symbol on the front creates the sound “Ko ko ro” in the Hiragana phonetic alphabet. Meanwhile the symbols on the neck seal mean “soul of the forest” or “a forest spirit” depending on which way up you read them.

Read my review of Kokoro Gin

Pickering's Navy Strength Gin bottle.

31. PICKERING’S NAVY STRENGTH GIN

SCOTLAND

Photo: © Pickering’s Gin

{Samples gifted previously]

What a beauty of a bottle this is by Pickering’s Gin. In 2014, to mark their sponsorship of The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, they created their Navy Strength Gin.

Complete with bearskin hat and a commemorative neck tag, it brilliantly captures the image of the Tattoo’s military performers, staged annually on the Esplanade of Edinburgh Castle.

Eenoo Gin bottle sitting in a river

30. EENOO GIN

SCOTLAND

Photo: © The Gin Cooperative 

eeNoo is distilled by Lost Loch Spirits and it takes its name from the old Scots word for “just now”. The bottle found its inspiration in an old book entitled “A Narrative of Some Passages in the History of Eenoolooapik”, by Alexander M’Donald. In 1839, “Eenoo” landed in Aberdeen from Canada, aboard a whaling boat. During his time there he taught locals many skills including how to Qajaq.

Lost Loch Spirits loved the tale so much they looked to pay tribute to Eenoolooapik with their gin. The design takes inspiration from Eenoo’s native artwork, which they found to be vibrant and colourful, with the hourglass representing ‘time’.

KURO Gin bottle.

29. KURO GIN

ENGLAND

Photo: © KURO Gin

[Previously collaboration – sample gifted]

KURO Gin is a Japanese-influenced gin, created by Manchester friends and distilled in the West Midlands. Using bamboo activated charcoal as a botanical, it’s where KURO takes its name, translating directly as ‘black’ in Japanese.

While many bottles on the market have a nostalic feel, KURO is definitely a more contemporary-style design.

Read my review of KURO Gin

Land of Saints Gin bottle.

28. Land of Saints GIN

ENGLAND

 Photo: © Land of Saints Gin

On the southwestern tip of England lies Cornwall, a region that’s fast becoming famed for its gins. Land of Saints takes its name from the fact that Cornwall is home to 69 saints.

The simple, but striking bottle features a map of Cornwall,with the turquoise surround a nod to the seas around the areas coastline. 

Achroous Gin bottle with a gin and tonic.

27. Achroous Gin

Scotland

Photo: © The Gin Cooperative

Highly commended at the IWSC Design Awards in 2019, Achroous Gin stands out in the opposite way to many gins on the market – in its simplicity.

It’s no surprise that the bottle has received such high praise given founder and distiller, James Porteous’s, background (he has a degree from the prestigious Glasgow School of Art).

As well as looking the part, Achroous also won double gold at the prestigious San Francisco World Spirits Competition. High praise indeed!

Palma Gin bottle with a sea view.

26. Palma GIN

Spain

Photo: © Mallorca Distillery

Palma Gin takes its striking pattern from traditional Mallorcan tiles called Suelo Hidraulico, with a local family of tile makers being the inspiration behind the design.

The complex pattern is ink printed onto the bottles, which took 10 months to design. The logo acknowledges the heritage of Palma, symbolising the rose window found in the La Seu Cathedral.

Brooklyn Gin bottle.

25. BROOKLYN GIN

USA

Photo: © Brooklyn Gin

Brooklyn Gin is a staple in many UK supermarkets with its irregular shape and turquoise glass. In the centre is its bronze logo emblazoned like a medal.

As its name suggests Brooklyn Gin is distilled in New York, but not in the borough from where it takes its name. However this is the dream of founders Emil Jättne and Joe Santos, which their website states is “closer than ever”.

Alkkemist Gin bottle.

24. ALKKEMIST GIN

SPAIN

Photo: © ALKKEMIST Gin

ALKKEMIST Gin is distilled just 12 times a year, under a full moon.  While it may not add anything to the flavour of the spirit it’s a process which certainly helps inspire the mystical aura its name suggests.

The distinct asymmetric stopper is reminiscent of the philosopher’s stone, synonymous with alchemy, helping to create a stand-out bottle in keeping with that from which it takes its name.

Wild Island Gin bottle with a mountain backdrop.

23. WILD ISLAND GIN

SCOTLAND

Photo: © Caitlin McNeill Photography

As a Scot, I may be biased Scot, but the country really does know how to brand and market spirits. Wild Island Gin, from the beautiful Isle of Colonsay, is no exception.  

Glasgow-based Thirst Craft is responsible for the packaging, inspired by the natural landscape of the island and its rich Viking heritage. I love of the watercolour-style design on the label – colourful and calming.

The Botanist Gin bottle and three gin and tonics sitting on an outdoor table.

22. THE BOTANIST GIN

SCOTLAND

Photo: © The Botanist Gin

The Botanist Gin is distilled at Bruichladdich Distillery in Isle of Islay, which is arguably more famous for its fine whiskies. However, this Hebridean gin is something of a contemporary icon when it comes to packaging. So iconic in fact that many probably won’t remember what the previous bottle looked like.

The current incarnation was launched in 2014 and cleverly has all 22 of its hand-foraged botanicals embossed on the glass in Latin.

Fishers Gin bottle.

21. FISHER’S GIN

ENGLAND

 Photo: © Fishers Gin

 [Previous collaboration]

Always a favourite of mine, the Fishers Gin bottle underwent a slight makeover in 2019. The brand elected to increase its size to 70cl, while the branding remained true to the original design by Parisian, Gilbert Lopez.

Following a three-day visit to their Aldeburgh home in Suffolk, Lopez took inspiration from the coastal town for his creation – most notably the fishermen’s lanterns and the vibrant colours of their nets.

Glaswegin Gin bottle and a gin and tonic.

20. Glaswegin

SCOTLAND

Photo: © The Gin Cooperative

Being from Glasgow, I obviously have a soft spot for Glaswegin! The distinct square bottle is incredibly well thought out, utilising its shape to accentuate the play on words (a Glaswegian being a resident of the city of Glasgow).

Designed by Glasgow School of Art graduate, Paul Gray, the brief was to create something that stood out in a saturated market. Paul felt that many of the gin brands he looks at didn’t stand out so opted for the minimalistic design and shape.

Hills & Harbour Gin bottle.

19. Hills & Harbour GIN

Scotland

Photo: © From the Gin Shelf

[Previously collaboration – bottle gifted]

With a background in branding, founder Graham Taylor has an edge on many gin brands when it comes to design and marketing. And it shows with the striking Hills & Harbour Gin. I’m drawn to the simplicity of the bottle, with its colour and typography catching the eye.

It’s modern and cool, and the green/aquamarine colours of the bottle mirror the forest and the sea, from which they get their signature botanicals. 

Read my review of Hills & Harbour Gin.

River Test Gin bottle.

18. River Test Distillery – London Dry Gin

England

Photo: © The River Test Distillery

River Test Distillery takes its name from the waters on which their gin is made. Famous for its fly fishing and clear waters, these two facets are incorporated into the design of their bespoke bottle.

Made by Allied Glass, the lined pattern embossed on the glass represents both the flow of the river and the mesh of a fishing net, while the lovely lime green colour of the bottle is achieved by spray painting its base.

Rock Rose Gin bottle with a gin and tonic

17. ROCK ROSE GIN

SCOTLAND

Photo: © Rock Rose Gin

With Rock Rose, Dunnet Bay Distillers have produced a striking design to really evoke the spirit of its gin. Based in the northernmost tip of mainland Scotland, the brand takes its name from the Rhodiola rosea (a rose in the rocks), one of its 18 botanicals.

The designs by Pocket Rocket Creative are now screen printed onto the lovely ceramic bottles, whereas until the summer of 2015 they’d been paper labels. Each bottle is hand-waxed and numbered, and it truly is a unique looking product. There are also several seasonal editions, with their Autumn Edition my particular favourite to taste!

Silent Pool Gin bottle.

16. SILENT POOL GIN

ENGLAND

Photo: © Silent Pool Gin

Standing in a bottle shop, I was instantly drawn to Silent Pool. I’d never tasted it but such was the beauty of the bottle, I was desperate to try it. The brand takes its name from the legendary haunted Silent Pool in Albury, England, where their distillery sits. 

Teaming up with Seymourpowell branding agency, they created a beautiful design, built around their brand and the SIlent Pool. The aqua green bottle takes inspiration from the colour of the pool, while the copper stopper and design are reminiscent of the still in which this stunning gin is made.

Copperfield Gin bottle and cocktail.

15. COPPERFIELD GIN

ENGLAND

Photo: © The Surrey Copperfield Distillery

Launched in 2018, Copperfield Gin takes its name from the classic Charles Dickens novel, David Copperfield. 

Working with Nude Brand Creation in London, Surrey Copperfield Distillery created a bottle inspired by their love of old books – of which they have a sizeable collection.

The label is given that extra dimension by using real copper hot-foiled over the top, while the side of the bottle reflects the spine of a book.

Explorer's Gin bottle.

14. EXPLORER’S GIN

ENGLAND

Photo: © Downton Distillery

Launched in 2019, Explorer’s Gin from Downton Distillery takes inspiration from an age long past. It celebrates a “Golden age of exploration” when European ships journeyed the ocean on voyages of discovery (think Sir Walter Raleigh and Sir Francis Drake).

Its a hugely striking bottle with its compass rose, nautical lines and ocean blue colour in touch with the brand story. 

Jarrold's Gin bottle,

13. JARROLD’S GIN

ENGLAND

{Bottle gifted previously]

Photo: © From the Gin Shelf

Launched in March 2018, The Nodding Donkey Distillery Company, have created a stunning bottle with their Jarrold’s Gin. Not bespoke in shape, but the label with its stained-glass window-like effect is striking.

Made with real gold in the ink to get the look they really wanted, everything about it looks premium and in line with their price point and positioning in the market.

Read my review of Jarrold’s Gin

Island Gin bottle and a gin and tonic sitting on a beach.

12. Island GIN

ENGLAND

Photo: © Scilly Spirit Distillery

The quaint Island Gin bottle takes inspiration from a lighthouse. At nearly 50 metres tall, the tower at Bishop Rock, Scilly, is an icon of the islands.

The aqua marine colour of the packaging mirrors the pristine local waters of their home. As well as the bottle’s shape, the deep wooden stopper is also a nod the Bishop Rock Lighthouse, resembling the helicopter landing pad which sits on top of the tower.

The bottle has two awards to its name – The 2019 Drinks Business Award for Design and Packaging, and Gold at the San Francisco World Spirits Design Competition 2020.

Chapel Down Pinot Noir and Bacchus Gin bottles.

11. Chapel Down GIN

ENGLAND

Photo: © From the Gin Shelf

Perhaps more famous for their wines, Chapel Down also has a strong base of spirits fans from their gins and vodka.

The custom-designed bottles pay homage to both these arts, with the top half frosted and shaped like a wine bottle, while the bottom mirrors a cut crystal cocktail shaker.

Chapel Down feature two gins in their range – Bacchus and Pinot Noir – and picked up the Best Design & Packaging in Spirits award at the 2018 Drinks Business Awards. 

Brentingby Gin bottle.

10. BRENTINGBY GIN

ENGLAND

Photo: © From the Gin Shelf

{Bottle gifted previously]

Despite the traditional approach to their flavour, there’s more than a touch of the contemporary to the bottle design of Brentingby Gin. Its copper bottle is a nod to Ayanda, the still personally designed and built by founder/distiller Bruce Midgely.

The logo etched on the centre is the hibiscus flower which is prominent in Bruce’s childhood home of Durban, South Africa. It’s also one of the botanicals used in Brentingby Gin. It’s a huge favourite with gin fanatics since its launch in 2018, both for this beauty, as well as its somewhat flavoursome gin.

Read my review of Brentingby Gin.

The Lakes Gin bottle. A gin and tonic and tonic water blurred in the background.

9. The Lakes GIN

England

Photo: © From the Gin Shelf

[Previously collaboration – bottle gifted]

Originally launched in 2014, The Lakes Gin transformed with this stunning rebrand in 2019. Working with Glasgow-based creative agency, D8, the centrepiece of the design is the quatrefoil, an ancient Celtic symbol, rooted in the Lake District’s heritage.

Adopted by the distillery as their logo, the symbol is beautifully used on the bottle design, with a chain of embossed quatrefoils across the light blue glass.

Read my review of The Lakes Gin.

Seven Crofts Gin bottle sitting on a table with a gin and tonic, garnished with orange peel.

8. Seven Crofts Gin

Scotland

Photo: © Highland Liquor Company

Situated in the north west coast of Scotland, sits the small village of Ullapool, the home of Highland Liquor Company. Their flagship product, takes its name after the original settlement on which the village now stands, with a croft being the Scottish word for a small farm.

Those seven farms are represented in on the label of the bottle with seven striped blocks to symbolise the farmland. Another design from the D8 agency, the shape of the glass is reminiscent of traditional Dutch jenever, while the gradient green is a nod to Ullapool as a place where land meets the sea.

Finally, the delicate contours of the bottle symbolise ploughed feels and ripples of the sea.

Skagerrak Gin bottle sitting on a beach at sunset.

7. Skagerrak Nordic Dry Gin

Norway

Photo: © Skagerrak Gin

When I first saw the Skagerrak Gin bottle, I was blown away by its beauty and simplicity. Named after the Skagerrak straight which runs between Denmark, Norway and Sweden, the gin is designed to characterise all three of the Nordic countries, with the gin made in collaboration with two of of the best bartenders from each country.

The inviting gradients of the dark blue represent the fierce Skagerrak sea, with different hues depending on the light. Three small dots surround the contemporary typography of the logo, symbolising three Nordic lighthouses which surround the straight, while the cork stopper has the North Star leading the way.

This is a gin I’m truly excited about!

44°N Gin bottle.

6. 44°N Gin

France

Photo: © Comte de Grasse

Everything about 44°N gin exudes luxury. Hailing from Grasse in the French Riviera, the town is synonymous with perfumery. The bottle is therefore reminiscent of the perfumer’s workshop while capturing the translucence of the Mediterranean Sea.

The design was created by forceMAJEURE in collaboration with CHIC Agency and it really is something special. While many bottles are beautiful in their own right, they don’t often have that unique quality. This is not something that can be said of 44°N gin, however. A beautiful and unique bottle, befitting of its premium positioning.

Mermaid Gin bottle underwater.

5. MERMAID GIN

ENGLAND

Photo: © Isle of Wight Distillery

[Previously collaboration – bottle gifted]

There’s no doubt the new Mermaid Gin bottle is an absolute showstopper. But when you read more into it, you can’t help fail to be even more impressed.

First launched in 2015, Mermaid Gin is a well-established brand by today’s standards. Hailing from the Isle of Wight, it obviously takes inspiration from the ocean. And with it’s plastic-free bespoke designed bottle, it goes even further to tie into that theme with its turquoise glass and scale-like exterior.

It really set social media talking on its launch in 2019 and it’s easily one of the most Instagramable bottles you’ll see!

Read my review of Mermaid Pink Gin.

Lind & Lime gin bottle.

4. LIND & LIME

SCOTLAND

Photo: © Port of Leith Distillery

Lind & Lime Gin was launched in 2018 and its bottle has caused quite the stir. The gin’s story is centred around the port of Leith in Edinburgh, Scotland’s capital. The city has a long history with gin, as a key trading port with Europe. Upon arriving in the harbour, wines and spirits would be taken from their barrels and bottled. Thus, glass became produced in large quantities in the port.

This heritage was the reason Port of Leith Distillery chose a wine-shaped bottle for their gin. As a nod to history, ‘Leith Glass Works’ is also embossed on the base of every bottle.

It’s a great concept which contributes hugely to telling the history of Leith’s fascinating past. But the execution of the design is something which can only be admired. Its transparent green glass and long slender neck are sophisticated and classy.

Porcelain Gin bottle.

3. Porcelain GIN

China

Photo: © The Porcelain Gin Distillery

Every so often, scrolling social media, a bottle stops you in your tracks. And Porcelain Gin really did do that!

Launched in 2020, the gin uses 18 botanicals, the majority of which are sourced from China. Inspired by perfume bottles from the time of the Ming dynasty, this incredible bottle was designed by artist, Lala Curio, in partnership with Hong Kong ceramic brand Loveramics.

As if to prove my earlier point about the importance of packaging in the category now, do I want to try it? You bet I do and I can’t wait until it’s available in the UK. Until then, you’ll just find me scrolling their Instagram feed!

Chinnery Gin bottle.

2. CHINNERY GIN

IRELAND

Photo: © From the Gin Shelf

(Bottle gifted previously)

At first glance, Chinnery Gin is a gorgeous bottle. But as you read more about its concept, it ties perfectly into the brand story. Inspired by the “romance of the Old China Trade” which brought commodities such as tea and spices to Europe in the 19th century, Chinnery Gin has some truly unique packaging.

The brand is named after George Chinnery, the English painter, who began his career in Dublin, before travelling to China. The bottle is inspired by these two parts of his career – Georgian Dublin and Imperial China.

The shape of the bottle taking inspiration from a Chinese lantern or a tea caddy. The bricks and windows of the bottle are typical of a Georgian-era townhouse in Dublin, while through the transparent windows are imaginings of the Far East, and Chinnery himself standing at an easel.

What makes the bottle all the more impressive is that co-founder/distiller, David Havelin, wrote a computer programme himself to design the label, ensuring complete control over the size, shape and colour of the bricks – even down to the number of rows!

Read my review of Chinnery Gin.

2 Isle of Harris G&Ts on a table, along with the Harris Gin bottle

1. Isle of Harris GIn

SCOTLAND

Photo: © From the Gin Shelf

Picking the top 10 for the list was hard enough. But picking the top five took hours of deliberation – it could easily have been any of them sitting at number 1. Ultimately I settled on Isle of Harris Gin to retain its top spot, not because it’s any more beautiful than the others in the top five, but because of its originality and how it captures the brand story so perfectly. Indeed, ever since its launch, it looks to me like many have taken influences from its design. And while they’re beautiful in their own right, Harris is the original – the one which really owns the style.

Working with specialist spirits branding agency, Stranger & Stranger, the ‘Social Distillery’ has created something which is the envy of many. They wanted to produce something which depicts the truly stunning scenery found on the island – and what a job they’ve done!

The ribbed glass is reminiscent of the turquoise waters synonymous with the Hebridean island. The paper labels also capture the ruggedness of the landscape. Each is a unique combination of flecked copper and sugar kelp (the key botanical in the gin), making every individual bottle that bit more special. There are fingerprint-liked indents on the bottle too as if it had been washed up on the golden sands of the island. And to cap it all off, the label features the coordinates of the distillery in Tarbert – meaning you know that every bottle of Harris Gin is coming directly from the island.

And the inside? It tastes incredible too!

Read my review of Isle of Harris Gin.