Name: Loch Ness Gin (43.3% ABV)
Distilled: The first batch of this relatively new gin was distilled at the Strathearn Distillery. The second was distilled at the family estate of the couple who make it, once they had installed their very own still.
Encountered: At The Dores Inn on the shore of Loch Ness, (where we also had a very nice dinner!) during my road trip to the area last month.
Flavours According To Me: The first thing that came across was spice. It tasted warming and had a lovely kick to it - perfect after a chilly walk along the neighbouring stony beach, staring out at the mysterious Loch. My friend Erica had a sip and said she could taste bitter lemon (I didn't have a slice of lemon in the glass).
Actual Flavours: Interestingly, the makers of this small batch gin are keeping the botanicals a secret, preferring to let drinkers decide for themselves what they can taste. All botanicals are taken from around Loch Ness and the water used is also locally sourced.
Extra Good Stuff: When doing my research after coming across this lovely local brand, I discovered that it was only launched in August this year, meaning that when I sipped it in mid-September, I was drinking one of the very first batches!
Trivia: The couple who launched Loch Ness Gin also make Loch Ness Vodka and Loch Ness Rum, and the juniper for the gin gets picked by the couple during their days off!
You Can't Judge a Bottle By Its Cover: Beautiful, sophisticated black, with a stand-out orange font and a classy, understated Loch Ness Monster motif on the front - that, interestingly, resembles a Plesiosaur. A clue as to what form Nessie takes, by any chance?
Did I Like It?: Very much. I'd say it's more of a winter than a summer drink, and I can just imagine curling up with a glass of it to sip on a cold day. In winter, I'm sure something warming like this is very welcome in The Highlands!
Can You Buy It?: Yes, a bottle costs £45 on the official website. However, it should be noted that batches 1 and 2 have sold out, so you'll have to wait for batch 3!
Gin For Tea Rating: I'm awarding this mysterious gin a marvellous 8 gin-filled teacups out of 10. The flavours not being disclosed makes tasting Loch Ness Gin feel a bit like gazing out over the Loch, wondering where that monster is hiding - it's a little bit magical.
Christina, 32, London. Likes gin.