Otterbeck Distillery is a small-batch premium gin distillery based in The Yorkshire Dales in Northern England. Covering thousands of square miles of lush valleys, hills, moors and farmlands, the Dales are naturally a great source of inspiration for the gins created — full of fragrant flavors of citrus fruits and garden herbs, the expressions are a celebration of England’s countryside and use locally foraged botanicals.
The distillery is housed within an historic cotton mill on the banks of the River Aire. Tours are available where visitors can meet ‘Eliza,’ the state-of-the-art Still and learn about the distillation process.
Recently, celebrated chef Michael Wignall collaborated with the distillery to create his own expression of the award-winning Cotton Gin. Wignall is one of the most respected chefs in the UK and has won Michelin stars in every kitchen he has headed since being awarded his first star in 1993.
Inspired by a combination of Wignall’s love of the Far East and the striking Yorkshire landscape, the gin features yuzu and kaffir balanced with elderflower foraged from the Dales. According to Wignall, “I have always had a passion for the far east, in particular Japan and their respect for ingredients.
The combination of the sharpness and elegance of yuzu, combined with the distinctly perfume flavor of kaffir lime, finished with the delicate and floral flavor and aroma of elderflower, for me is reminiscent of my childhood memories. Each flavor enhances the other and creates a really fresh and fragrant gin.”
Housed in a gorgeous apothecary-style bottle, which would be perfect to use for some dried flowers once the gin has run dry, Otterbeck also sells refillable pouches of gin in case you want to refill.
This week’s cocktail recipe, the Gin Umami Twist, uses Japanese ingredients — such as nori sheet syrup — to complement the gin’s profile.
Gin Umami Twist by Otterbeck Distillery
– 1.5oz Sake Umeshu
– 0.75oz Michael Wignall Cotton gin
– 0.75oz Nori sheet syrup (see below)
– 0.75oz Lime Juice
– 2 drops of shio koji
For the nori sheet syrup, add equal amounts of sugar and water to a pan and bring to boil. Add Nori sheets to it and let infuse for a few minutes (per 100g a half sheet of Nori). Strain and cool.
Pour all ingredients into a shaker. Fill the shaker up with ice and shake. Fine strain in a chilled cocktail coupe.