Maidstone, Kent, England
Maiden Distillery is perched above the historic town of Maidstone in Kent, and has been creating award-wining gin since 2015. A one-woman operation, the distillery now produces four core expressions on a small 100L copper still named Arwen.
Although most will know Maidstone for the large number of breweries it's had, it was in fact gin production which really put Maidstone on the map. George Bishop's highly acclaimed Maidstone Distillery of the 1770s produced Maidstone Geneva which was sold in nearly every town and village across the country. This was a superior gin and was so highly regarded that nine Acts of Parliament were passed to secure its production continued. Maiden builds on this heritage and follows the same principles - it is even housed in an old brewery which was home to one of the original Bishop family gin distilleries!
All Maiden gins are distilled, bottled and labelled by hand on site so that all aspects of the production can be carefully controlled. When you buy Maiden gin you are buying a truly artisan product!
Maidstone Gin - 42% abv - Made with ten botanicals which are gently distilled with high grade grain spirit to produce a wonderfully aromatic gin. Staying true to the craft philosophy, Maidstone Gin is made in small batches, with every batch being distilled, bottled and labelled on site.
The gin is fresh and bright, bursting with flavour. Heady orange is evident on the nose with fresh pine developing. The gin is slightly sweeter than some London Dry's although no sugar is added. The sweetness comes directly from the sweet botanicals which are added to the still, namely marshmallow root and meadowsweet. This sweetness, along with zingy cardamom and coriander and the bright piny notes of juniper give Maidstone Gin a lovely complex, yet rounded, flavour. Enjoy with premium tonic and an orange slice to garnish.
Arwen's Flower Gin - 42% abv - First created in February 2016 this gin is made using a slightly different distillation process. Firstly the floral botanicals of rose, camomile, cornflower and marigold are gently distilled in grain spirit along with a number of fruits. This produces an intense floral distillate. The gin part of the blend is distilled separately before the two distillates are blended together to create a perfectly balanced gin. Finally the spirit is infused with raspberries to give a soft pink hue.
Arwen's Flower Gin is light and summery. Again the gin has a slight sweetness which comes directly from the botanicals used during distillation. There is a heady perfume to the gin with fragrant floral notes on tasting. Enjoy with pink grapefruit or cucumber tonic and garnish with mixed berries. For a more decadent feel add an edible flower to the glass.
Opulent Berry Gin - 42% abv - A cornucopia of rich berries is added to the still, along with juniper and traditional gin botanicals, and distilled with high grade grain spirit. This produces a flavoursome, berry spirit which is then rested. More berries are added to the spirit to intensify the flavour.
This gin is perfect for sipping on summer terraces or enjoying on a cosy winter evening by the fire. The gin is rich and fruity but don't expect too much sweetness! There's a hint of fizziness on tasting which then develops into mellow berry notes. For something a little different, pair with rhubarb tonic and garnish with a slice of apple/sprig of mint.
Maiden Spiced Gin - 42% abv - Made by infusing Maidstone Gin with winter spices. This is a complex gin with layers of flavour. Warming cinnamon is contrasted with fresh orange on the nose. The aromatic notes of Maidstone Gin come shining through with a hint of vanilla to give a touch of sweetness. Finally there's a warmth of cinnamon which lingers on the palate. On a warm day enjoy with ginger ale and a slice of orange. For a cosy drink, enjoy with warm apple juice garnished with apple pieces dusted with mixed spice.
Shop the range here.