Stranger & Sons, one of the first gins to be made in India since the country gained independence in the 1940s, has launched in the UK.
Produced at the Third Eye Distillery in Ponda, a district in south Goa with a rich history of spice farming, the small-batch craft gin “celebrates the abundance and diversity of high-quality botanicals and inherently Indian spices”.
Stranger & Sons is distilled with a selection of seven botanicals typically found in the country’s household kitchens, in addition to juniper and angelica root. These include a bouquet of locally cultivated and handpicked spices such as coriander seeds, black pepper and cassia bark, along with a blend of four Indian citrus peels.
The resulting gin is a “light and refreshing, three-dimensional spirit with spiced overtones, followed by an earthy, sweet aftertaste”.
Crucial to Third Eye Distillery’s operation is the support of the local community. Women from a local self-help group are employed to peel the four local citrus fruits that perfume the gin, before the distillery returns the flesh of the fruit to them.
The women then use this surplus fruit to create pickles and cordials for Stranger & Sons’ cocktails, thus providing them with additional income and minimising food waste.
Stranger & Sons co-founder Sakshi Saigal said: “As avid gin drinkers, we always heard of India spoken about in gin circles, as the country has long been a vital supplier of botanicals for the international gin market, but surprisingly there weren’t many craft gins being created in India.
“We decided to distil our own quality Indian spirits, starting with this small batch gin, which uses common spices and botanicals found in every Indian household.
“We have carefully sourced the majority of our spices from the Indian spice belt and fruits from across the country to create a gin which perfectly captures the spirit of India.
“We are so excited to be launching Stranger & Sons in the UK, and we can’t wait to see the creativity of UK bartenders and the serves they come up with.”
Stranger & Sons gin will be available to the on-trade through Scotch + Limon, Third Eye Distillery’s exclusive UK distribution partner.