Tag Archives: Two Birds London Dry Gin

Two Birds London Dry Gin

Is it gin fatigue? I am finding that after an extensive tour of the exotic delights of the ginaissance, I am more and more drawn to gins that are pared down to just a handful of botanicals. Two Birds London Dry Gin, which has been on my list to try for years, is one of them. Two Birds Spirits was founded by Mark Gamble in 2012, launching its first gin the following year, and is now part of the British Honey Company.

Based in Market Harborough in Leicestershire, the gin’s name celebrates the English countryside and all that is good about it, using botanicals which can be described as belonging to the country and natural spring water from the nearby Charnwood Forest. Charming as that image is, the name does sow a seed or two of confusion as there is a totally separate Two Birds Artisan Spirits which operates out of Michigan and produces Greyling Modern Dry Gin. Make sure you order the right one.   

Gamble is a little coy as to what botanicals go into the mix, save that it is juniper and four other botanicals which represent the finest of the countryside. At a guess, it includes the traditional trio of coriander, orris root, and citrus. Using a grain base, the gin is distilled in batches of 100 bottles in a handmade copper still pot. The labelling suggests that the botanicals are infused into the spirit. The result, once diluted with the local spring water, is a spirit with an ABV of 40%.

The bottle is attractive, cylindrical in shape with round shoulders and a relatively short neck leading to a screwcap top. The glass is clear and unembossed and the design is fresh and modern, using blue for the two birds and the background to the small label towards the bottom of the bottle and a navy blue for the top. The birds are perched at the top and bottom of the spirit’s name but in a clever touch, if you look through the bottle, there is a design of tree on the back of bottle which the birds appear to roost in. Clever as that may be, I am not sure that the overall design is sufficiently eye-catching enough to stand out on a crowded shelf.

On unscrewing the cap, the aroma is enticing and holds out the promise of a traditional London Dry Gin, but with a little added twist, a balanced melange of juniper, citrus, and pepper. In the glass it is crystal clear. My first surprise was that instead of the initial hit of juniper I was expecting, the initial sensations were that of a slightly acidic citrus. It was not long, though, before the juniper made its way to the front of the stage and then, in a slightly unexpected twist, there was a distinct hint of vanilla. The aftertaste was long, lingering and surprisingly peppery.

It struck me as a well-balanced gin which straddled, perhaps somewhat uncertainly, both the truly traditional London Dry and contemporary styles. That the component parts of the spirit were easily discernible is testament to the care and skill taken in perfecting the drink and to the merit in reducing the number of botanicals and making them work.