Eden Mill launch Distiller's Choice gin collection with limited edition Oak Old Tom

Oak Old Tom gin is the first limited edition release from Eden Mill’s new premium gin collection, Distiller’s Choice.

Published 16th Feb 2021
Updated 18 th Sep 2023

Personally curated and hand-crafted by the Eden Mill expert senior distilling team, Distiller’s Choice is a collection of contemporary gin expressions which showcase the best of old and new distilling techniques to create a range of gins that are ideal for connoisseurs.

Speaking of the new launch, CEO and co-founder Tony Kelly said: “Eden Mill has always been at the forefront of trends within the spirits industry and we pride ourselves on our pioneering spirit and desire to go beyond the conventional.

“We started in 2012 with the mission to revive the lost art of distilling and brewing in St. Andrews by creating small-batch, craft products from our site on the bank of the Eden Estuary.

“With our Distiller’s Choice range, we’d like to take our audience back to our roots when our distilling team would create various small-batch gin expressions and experiment with techniques and flavours.”

Oak Old Tom Gin has been chosen by Eden Mill head distiller, Scott Ferguson to be the first release of the Distiller's Choice collection.

The gin combines Scott’s passion for classic gin distilling practices with his experience of building the Eden Mill flavour profiles since 2012, when he was the third person to join the Eden Mill team.

Scott has always found the distilling method and history of Old Tom Gin fascinating, saying:“One of the lightly sweetened gins that was popular in 18th-century, Old Tom Gin has been rumoured to have got its name from what was essentially the first ever vending machine for drinks.

"During the gin craze in the 1700s, the government tried to stem the flow of gin, which they blamed for ‘extreme drunkenness’ and crime by introducing prohibitive taxes.

"So to get round the licensing, some pubs would have a wooden plaque shaped like a black cat, "Old Tom" on their outside wall.

"Thirsty bypassers would place a penny in the cat’s mouth and place their lips around a small tube between the cat’s paws. The bartender inside would then pour a shot of gin through the tube and into the customer’s waiting mouth."

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Inspired by one his favourite flavour creations from the core Eden Mill range, Scott used the same American Oak chips from Eden Mill’s Oak Gin to age this Old Tom Gin to create a balance of creamy oak and vanilla sweetness combined with the aromatic cassia spice and a light peppery finish.

Eden Mill’s Distiller’s Choice Oak Old Tom Gin (£40, ABV 49%) is available online now.

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Known for cake making, experimental jam recipes, Champagne, whisky and gin drinking (and the inability to cook Gnocchi), Rosalind is the Food and Drink Editor and whisky writer for The Scotsman, as well as hosting Scran, The Scotsman's food and drink podcast.
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