Whilst we might be reaching peak flavoured gin, every now and then, a brand drops a new, intriguing alternative that makes it more than acceptable to indulge in a somewhat guilty pleasure. This new launch from Amarula, is rich in taste and heritage and brings a genuinely new flavour profile to the space. Whilst Amarula is better known as a cream liqueur from South Africa, whoever made the decision to start distilling the marula fruit into gin deserves a thank you.
This is currently the only gin crafted from the marula fruit. Growing in the wild, marula has drawn herds of elephants to its trees with its captivating scent for thousands of years, signalling to the surrounding local communities that the fruit is then ripe for harvest.
Once the elephants have had their share, the marula fruit is hand-picked, washed and pulped for distillation. Combined with more classically recognised gin botanicals of juniper berries and orange peel, after steeping for a day, the spirit is then pot distilled. And the result is undeniably fruity, bursting with sweet, exotic notes and an underlying thread of juniper. Orange is strong on the palate, with a touch of sweet spice that’s very subtle and lets the fruity flavours of the gin take centre stage.
Recommended serve is over ice with your tonic of choice, but it’s a delicious gin for mixing cocktails too. The team at Amarula have whipped up a brilliant Pineapple Fizz that’s well worth a try at home:
50ml Amarula African Gin
25ml Pineapple Juice
25ml Lemon Juice
½ Teaspoon Orange Marmalade
Splash of Prosecco or Soda
(Pineapple Slice to garnish)
Shake all ingredients (except prosecco or soda) with ice
Double strain to a chilled coupe
Splash of prosecco or soda to awaken
Garnish with pineapple
But my favourite part of the launch is that for every litre of gin sold, £1 will be donated to the Amarula Trust. Established to help safeguard the African elephant, the conservation of the elephants is one of Amarula’s key charitable pillars.
Whilst Amarula has played around with flavours in its cream liqueur for some time, this is the first step into spirits, and it’s a pretty good start at that.
Available to purchase The Whiskey Exchange RRP £28, 700ml ABV 43%.
Chatting Food contributor: Lucie Rhoades