Hollywood, CA(Spiritsman)10/4/12/–Premium Gin along with Spiced Rum seems to be the fastest growing segment of the Spirits market and the latest to enter the market is the Sonoma based Uncle Val’s Botanical Gin. Uncle Val is in fact Zio Valerio who lives in Lucca, Italy, and the Botanicals are inspired by those found in his garden which he also uses in his cooking.
To be more specific, the prime ingredients used in Uncle Val are Juniper, Lemon, Cucumber, Sage and Lavender. Each bottle is hand-numbered and carefully placed in cases only carrying 6 bottles.
Juniper is of course the prime ingredient in gin, lemon provides the citrus crispiness needed, cucumber adds a cooling effect to the taste, sage brings a calming effect an lavender brings a floral sensation to the taste. However what I am unable to discern is where the water comes from in the distilling process.
Talking of distilling, the gin is distilled five times from grain. There is also a strong hint of lime in the gin, and if like me you are almost obsessed with the taste of lime, then Uncle Val will be a gin you will want to try.
The design of the bottle is also interesting, also eminating from Italy. Based on bitter bottles from the 18th and 19th century, it has tapered shoulders and a dark green hue. The illustration of Uncle Val on the bottle is classic Roman style, and the whole look is a tribute to old time craftsmanship, luckily still alive in much of Italy.
Tasting notes I scribbled down while trying this goodie indicated sage and juniper, and then some lemon with a hint of lavender. Then the cucumber starts to take effect. This is a relatively easy gin to drink, despite all the transfusion of ingredients, and if you are into gin then add it to your collection of Whitley Neill, Plymouth and Martin Miller, our other faves, at least at this time.
Because of the limited production, the price point of between $35 and $39.99 depending on where you find it might put off the odd customer, but give it a try for sure.
287 S.Robertson Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90211