It's spring, the days are getting longer and the weather is getting warmer meaning it's the perfect time to enjoy a Scottish gin and tonic or two.

The growth of Scotland’s gin scene shows no sign slowing and at this rate, the number of producers creating Scottish gins will surely soon outnumber those who make whisky.

All this means is that there are plenty of exciting new brands to try and this month, so to celebrate we’ve picked out six new Scottish gins we can’t wait to try this spring.

AK’S Gin

(Produced by: Arbikie, location: Inverkeilor, Arbroath, price: £35.00 for 70cl)

The follow up to the hugely popular Kirsty’s Gin, ‘AK’S Gin’ is named after Alexander Kirkwood Stirling, the father of Arbikie owners Iain, John and David.

Distilled using honey and wheat farmed at Arbikie, the gin also uses black pepper, mace and cardamom as the other key ingredients.

Rich in flavour with buttery notes from the wheat, this gin is smooth and easy drinking, as at home being drunk with tonic as it is being used for cocktails.

The Crow Man’s Lovage Gin

(Produced by: Kelso Gin Company, location: The Borders, price: £40.00 for 70cl)

Using only organic grain spirit, The Kelso Gin Company says its range of small batch gins are supremely creamy and made with locally-foraged ingredients to ensure that they are “truly a taste of the Borders”.

The Lovage gin was our favourite of the three on offer (though the other two are also definitely worth checking out), flavoured from locally soured lovage in the Teviot valley it really is a show stopper.

Darnley’s Spiced Gin Navy Strength

(Produced by: Wemyss Malts, location: Kingsbarns, Fife, price: £40.00 for 70cl)

Having not only spruced up their packaging and dropping the ‘View’ from their name, Darnley’s Gin have also come out with this cracker.

We’ve tried (and enjoyed) the original Spiced Gin before and this Navy Strength version really kicks that excellent flavour – as well as the alcohol content (which is now 57.1% abv) – onto a whole new level.

Warm and spicy, with unusual and distinctive flavours coming through from botanicals such as the cumin, coriander seed and cinnamon, it really is a complex beast that reveals a little more each time you try it. Perfect for cocktails.

Ginerosity Gin

(Produced by: Pickerings, location: Edinburgh, price: £25.00 for 50cl)

Drink gin, feel good about yourself – and not just from enjoying the gin but also from the fact that when you do so you’ll be helping a bundle of charities into the bargain.

The “world’s first social enterprise gin” was launched by Pickering’s Gin founders Marcus Pickering and Matt Gammell, who have teamed up with social enterprise experts to create a gin that would see profits from the sales invested into projects that will help and support under-privileged or disadvantaged young people.

On top of that it’s a great gin, with orange, myrtle, heather, cardamom and cloves all being used as botanicals to create a gin that’s big on flavour but highly accessible.

Lone Wolf Gin

(Produced by: Brewdog, location: Aberdeen)

Picture: Brewdog Facebook

Just launched, the spirits arm of the Brewdog brewery has a lot to live up to, but it seems the team behind Punk IPA and the like isn’t messing about.

Well they are – but mostly with the status quo.

Expect all sorts of innovative new spirits in the future but for just now, just know that they’ve made an delightful gin that’s well worth a try.

Made using 100% malt barley spirit following a long series of experiments with different botanicals, the gin is refreshing with a heavy hit of citrus followed up by notes of Scottish pine and the spice of pink peppercorn.

McQueen Dry Gin

(Produced by: McQeen Gin, location: Callander, price: £35 for 50cl)

We hate it when producers use the expression ‘award-winning’ without some genuine recognition to back it up but when it’s a award from the International Spirits Challenge (a silver no less) then we can accept that this is more than likely a good gin.

And it is, really it is. One for the traditionalists it’s big on juniper and those excellent clean pine notes you’d expect from a classic dry gin but it also has a little extra vanilla sweetness that just complements it perfectly.

About The Author

Sean Murphy

Driven by a passion for all things whisky-related, Sean writes for The Scotsman extensively on the subject. He can also sometimes be found behind the bar at the world famous Potstill bar in Glasgow where he continues to enhance his whisky knowledge built up over six years advising customers from all over the world on the wonders of our national drink.

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