Cousin Vera’s Gin is an exciting international collaboration between two premier craft gin distilleries: Spain’s Santamanía and Australia’s Four Pillars. What began as a few thoughts on Twitter turned into a series of multilingual emails, then a meeting in Madrid between two master gin crafters. From their distillery in the Yarra, Four Pillars brought a selection of Australia’s uniquely aromatic botanicals. In a series of experiments, these were combined with the savoury Mediterranean flavours sampled by Santamanía.
This resulted in a recipe beginning with a base of Tempranillo grape spirit, then adding such spicy and savoury Spanish botanicals as almond, white pepper and coriander seed. From Australia, the ingredients included lemon myrtle, olive leaf, Tasmanian pepper leaf, coriander and fresh orange peel. For distillation, they decided, this worldly blend of botanicals was to be steeped overnight with all plates open for a slow, even distillation.
Once this recipe was established, each distiller left with their share of otherworldly ingredients to get to work. In Madrid, Santamanía began distilling in their copper still lovingly named Vera. Back in the Yarra, Four Pillars began their work in their copper stills Wilma and Jude. Four Pillars remarked that their stills were so similar to Santamanía’s Vera, that they considered them cousins. This led to the name “Cousin Vera’s Gin”, while the recipe they followed led to an exceptional international gin.
Cousin Vera’s Gin comes full of bright savoury aromatics, each accentuated by a spike of Spanish citrus. Cornicabra olives, fresh rosemary and crushed coriander come in above a solid base of juniper. Bridged by an overall texture of almond, the spirit’s savoury notes carry on to the palate supported by pine needles and olive leaf. The finish features the sweetness of its Australian ingredients, making this a true Yarra-style Spanish gin. Excellent in G&Ts or on its own, add a bottle of Four Pillars’ Cousin Vera’s Gin to your international collection.