December 1st, 2017
Chapel Down, has launched its first gin and a vodka produced from grapes from Chapel Down’s 2016 harvest.
Chapel Down Bacchus Gin and Chapel Down Chardonnay Vodka bring together winemaking expertise with modern distillation techniques to produce a unique range of English spirits. Created using distilled grape skins from a single vintage year, each spirit has been developed to reflect the delicate flavour profile of the wine varietal. The gin is produced from Bacchus grape skins, an aromatic grape variety fast gaining notoriety as England’s answer to Sauvignon Blanc. The vodka is produced from Chardonnay grape skins from the wine producer’s vineyards in Kent.
The limited edition spirits, ‘The Spirit of Chapel Down', are packaged in an elegant, custom-made 70cl glass bottle which links back to the two production processes; distillation and winemaking. The bottom half of the bottle reflects a cut-glass crystal decanter and the frosted top half of the bottle denotes the classic shape of a wine bottle.
Chapel Down Bacchus Gin 2016 is produced from distilled Bacchus grape skins from the 2016 Chapel Down harvest and infused with juniper, coriander, elderflower, orris, angelica, lavender, orange peel and lemon. The result is a highly aromatic gin with heady aromas of citrus fruits and a herbal finish.
Josh Donaghay-Spire, head winemaker, comments: “We wanted to create the perfect aromatic gin from our distilled Bacchus grapes. With delicate aromas of citrus peel, juniper and freshly cut grass it makes the perfect, refreshing English gin and tonic.”
Chapel Down Chardonnay Vodka 2016 is produced from distilled Chardonnay grape skins also from the 2016 Chapel Down harvest. An expressive vodka with delicate citrus and floral aromas leading to a smooth, creamy palate that is versatile in an array of classic serves and cocktails.
The Kent-based wine producer already has experience in diversifying in to other drinks categories. In 2011, Chapel Down launched the premium range of Curious beer and cider; each produced with a winemaking twist. The popular Curious Brew lager, which is re-fermented with Champagne yeast, has reported double-digit growth year on year. Last year, Chapel Down released a 23 year old English grape brandy, the first to be made from English grapes, which was hailed by leading spirits writer Johnny Ray as “utterly, completely, overwhelmingly, mouth-fillingly delicious”.
Mark Harvey, Chapel Down Managing Director, explains: ”We see a significant opportunity ahead in super-premium spirits for Chapel Down. We have chosen to develop products with a simplicity of style that we think will cut-through the competing noise in these high-growth segments.
Our winemaker has developed products that faithfully reflect the balance and refreshing taste profile of the grape varietals from which they are made. These products are then packaged in an elegant custom-made, cut-glass design. After two years in development we are now excited to share these new spirits with the growing congregation of Chapel Down fans!”
The Chapel Down Bacchus Gin 2016 (RRP £35.00, 70cl) and Chapel Down Chardonnay Vodka 2016 (RRP £32.00, 70cl) will be released on 30th November 2017 and will be available for a four month period of exclusivity through Majestic Wine Warehouse and on the chapel down website. The products will also be available at London’s leading cocktail bar group, Mr Fogg’s, and will be served in a series of curious serves at Mr Fogg’s Residence, Mr Fogg’s Tavern and Mr Fogg’s Gin Parlour.