Mary | London Dry Gin Distillers Recipe Kit

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Mary of Orange, the daughter of King Charles I married a Dutchman in 1641.  Since genever, the forerunner of gin originally comes from the Netherlands, her marriage helped her popularize the drink in England.  After Mary died, the British made it legal for anyone to distill their own gin, which directly led to something we now call “the gin craze”.  You might say the "the gin craze" has returned again nowadays with an explosion in Aussie Craft Gins and home Gin Distilling.

London Dry Gin is defined as a gin that is redistilled to an ABV (Alcohol by Volume) of at least 70% (after being originally distilled at over 96% ABV.) After that, it can only be watered down to a minimum of 37.5% ABV and cannot have any artificial ingredients or color added after the fact. It is also only allowed to add a very minimal amount of sweetener. Because of these stringent rules, the taste of a London Dry Gin is primarily that of the juniper berries from which the spirit is made.  Mary is our take on a classic London Dry Gin.  Juniper forward with classic botanicals and no artificial flavours or ingredients.  Give it a try and tell us what you think after you drink and toast Queen Mary of Orange! Lady Genever!

cheers #distilsafely #enjoyresponsibly

Vital Stats:

Batch & Fermentation:

  • Wash Size: 25 Litres
  • Est. SG 1.072 FG: 1.002
  • Fermentation time: 1 week
  • Final Product Approx. 5L
  • Standard 40% ABV of 80 Proof

Neutral Base Spirit Ingredients:

Amount

Name

25 Litres

Water (ideally reverse osmosis (RO) or distilled water)

4.5 Kg

Manufacturers White Sugar - CSR

50g

Still Spirits Light Nutrient

11g

Still Spirits - Gin Yeast

130g

Still Spirits - Turbo Clear

130g

Still Spirits – Turbo Carbon

 130g

Botanical Mix (Juniper, Coriander, Cinnamon, Ginger, Nutmeg)

Equipment Required: (NB: not included in Recipe Kit)

AIDS:

Water Adjustments (Optimal fermentation pH between 5.0 - 5.5).  You will need to buffer the fermentation to raise pH as it will drop quickly.  Consider adding sodium bicarbonate or potassium bicarbonate at 1g/Litre (per final volume) to help buffer your fermentation pH back up to optimal pH levels during the fermentation.  You will also need to feed your Yeast - Yeast Nutrients and DAP

Method:

  1. Heat 10 Litres of water to 100°C and add to fermenter. 
  2. Dissolve 4.50 Kg of Manufacturers White Sugar – CSR and stir vigorously. 
  3. Add another 12 Litres, of cool or ice water to drop the temperature to 38C (100F).  Wash total should be 25L.  Stir vigorously or use an oxygen aeration kit to oxygenate the wort prior to fermentation.
  4. Test the pH of your wash. The ideal pH is 5.0-5.5ph. Use citric acid to bring the pH down and Calcium Carbonate (sold separately, NOT included in Kit) or sodium bicarbonate (Baking Soda) to bring it up.
  5. Pitch the yeast and Turbo Carbon.  Add 20g of Still Spirits Light Nutrient on Day 0 at the start of fermentation.  Check the fermentation on Day 1 3 and 5 stirring vigously to degas and check the pH and buffer accordingly.  Add another 15g of Still Spirits Light Nutrient on Day 1 or 3 as soon as the SG has dropped by 1/3 and add the final 15g of Still Spirits Light Nutrient 2 days later. This will aid healthy yeast in addition to degassing the wash with vigorous stirring and buffering the pH into the ideal pH range.  Watch the pH - Add sodium bicarbonate or potassium bicarbonate at 1g/Litre (per final volume) to help buffer your fermentations.
  6. Ferment warm at 30-32°C for 3-7 days (Wait for two consecutive days of consistent low Hydrometer readings).  
  7. Once fermentation is complete.  Stir the wash vigorously to remove all the remaining CO2.  Once degassed, add the contents of Part A of Still Spirits - Turbo Clear stir well, then leave for 1 hour to stand.
  8. After 1 hour, slowly pour Part B of Still Spirits - Turbo Clear evenly over the top of the wash while stirring gently to help spread it evenly.  Do not stir vigorously as this will disrupt the clearing process.  Leave to clear for 24 hours.  During this time Part B will drop down from the top, taking all unwanted yeast and sediment with it to the bottom.  If you have temperature control of your fermenter or an old fridge, feel free to crash chill to assist with clarification of your wash before distillation.

Move the wash to your Boiler and prepare to Distil Happy!

  1. Before beginning distillation, ensure still is cleaned thoroughly before use
  2. Complete a stripping run without botanicals first
  3. While the still is running prepare the botanicals by crushing them ideally with a mortar and pestle.
  4. On the second spirit run add botanicals either directly into your still replacing some of the copper packaging or using a gin basket attachment.
  5. Adjust the heat accordingly, aiming for 3-5 drips per second. Remembering to separate your head, hearts and tails.
  6. Once completed water down the distillate to 40% ABV with distilled water.
  7. Your Gin is now ready to enjoy! - Alternative step – Add the botanical mix to the finished product for 2-3 days for extra flavour.  Taste regularly.

Further Reading and Learning:

How To Make Gin: A Distillers Guide - Mile Hi Distilling 

Improve your Mead with Staggered Nutrient Additions | AHA

The Joy of Home Distilling: The Ultimate Guide to Making Your Own Vodka, Whiskey, Rum, Brandy, Moonshine, and More - Rick Morris