Creators of Chilgrove Gin to launch grape-based vodka

Chilgrove Vodka

The first British vodka distilled from grapes is to be launched by the creators of Chilgrove Gin.

The special-edition Chilgrove Vodka is very smooth with an elegant crisp character, with no flavour from the grapes. At 40% ABV, it is made with natural mineral water from the Sussex Downs around the village of Chilgrove in West Sussex.

It was developed by Christopher and Celia Beaumont-Hutchings, who launched Chilgrove Dry Gin in summer last year, and leading distiller Charles Maxwell of Thames Distillers.

Only 3,500 individually numbered bottles of the first batch of the vodka have been produced, due for launch in October.

Chilgrove Gin was the first British gin to be made using alcohol distilled from grapes rather than conventional cereal. With growing distribution in the on-trade, it is available through leading wholesalers such as Coe Vintners, Speciality Drinks and Hammonds.

Christopher said: “The success of our first product Chilgrove Gin has led to this early launch of our second ‘Gloriously English’ Chilgrove spirit, Chilgrove Vodka.

“Trade experts and discerning consumers have been fascinated by its production using grape distilled alcohol, and appreciate how this improves the resulting spirit.

“The benefits of using the grape base in Chilgrove Vodka can be enjoyed in a simple vodka and tonic mix, and in the coming months we will be perfecting our ‘gloriously English’ signature cocktails and working closely with bars and pubs to trial their own.”

The back label features serving suggestions such as a Vodka Collins, a Vodka Martini and a Bloody Mary.

According to Charles’s tasting notes, “Chilgrove Vodka is clean and soft on the nose with just a hint of fruit. On the palate it is smooth and soft with very slight earthy notes. It has a good long smooth lingering finish. A superior vodka!”

Chilgrove Vodka signature serves

Chilgrove Bloody Mary
50ml Chilgrove Vodka
Juice of half a lemon
6 dashes Worcestershire sauce
3 dashes Tabasco
Tomato juice
Add chunky ice to a highball glass and add the vodka. Stir in the lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco. Top up with chilled tomato juice and season to taste with celery salt and black pepper. Garnish with a celery stalk and grated lemon zest.

Chilgrove Vesper
50ml Chilgrove Vodka
50ml Chilgrove Dry Gin
12.5ml Lillet Blanc
Shake the ingredients with ice in a shaker, then pour into a chilled martini or deep champagne goblet. Garnish with a large, thin-cut piece of lemon peel.

Chilgrove Kangaroo (aka Vodka Martini)
100ml Chilgrove Vodka
12.5ml Dry vermouth
Mix the ingredients together with ice, shake well and strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with a thin piece of lemon peel.

Chilgrove Mule
50ml Chilgrove Vodka
100ml Chilled ginger beer
25ml Fresh lime juice
Build the cocktail over chunky ice cubes in an Old Fashioned glass. Garnish with a lime wedge and sprig of fresh mint.

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