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Pretty Pink Terre De Mistral - By Anastasia Wieclawska-Kyriakou
13 Dec 2019

When gin first hit the shores of England and Scotland nearly four hundred years ago, it came under the name of Genever, the Dutch name for Juniper. As its popularity grew, the only name a good gin required was the brewer’s mark; Gordon’s, Booth’s etc. Since then, and most recently over the past decade, gin has acquired some of the most diverse names in the spirit world, ranging from fruity concoctions to suggestive and saucy indicators.

 

At first glance Mistral Rose Gin has also acquired a rather trendy moniker, but the similarity ends there. Much like the wind itself, this is a SERIOUS gin.

 

Perhaps, it could be assumed, that Mistral Gin is simply a romantic name, giving respect to the area in Provence where the gin is lovingly produced, however, the wind itself actually plays an integral part of the gin’s production. The Mistral wind has an important role in creating the beautiful sunny climate of Provence, as it’s usually accompanied by clear, fresh skies, that typically last no longer than a week, and ensures over 300 days of sunshine for growing wonderful grapes, garrique herbs, and produce.

 

Although the Provence Rose wines have been lauded for many years, this is the first gin of the region, and following the latest trend for the more Instagrammable pure gin and tonics, Terre de Mistral was born as a delicately coloured, but extremely fragrant and saporous, Provençal gin.  Unusually, it is distilled from those aforementioned, very famous Provençal grapes and their wine, making this a gin for lovers of all things Francophile and Occitan.

 

 

Developed by three friends, and infused with their love of all things Provence, the hand crafted Terres de Mistral Gin is produced in a distillery in Forcalquiers, not far from Luberon. The family owned distillery has been operating for almost a hundred years, and this latest gin production, with modern manufacturing processes, represents a fusion of current market knowledge, local viniculture, and innovative flavour combinations.

 

With all this expertise and passion in production, Mistral Gin is a far cry from just another long, refreshing summer drink, and has all the strength of an exceptional, and sophisticated gin.

 

Its fresh, distinctive notes and flavours, as well as a lasting and pleasant finish are based upon the unique blend of herbs and wine that this region offers. Its wonderful rich terroirs and its diverse climate throughout the area of mountains, rich valleys, and sandy loamy soils on the coast presents an abundant territory for botanicals, and this gin makes exceptional use of a distinctive blend of twelve of them.

 

Six, are typical botanicals which often provide the building blocks for gin’s distinctive flavour. Cardamon, Maniguette, Pink Pepper, Juniper, Iris Root and Coriander are all distilled together. It is the remaining six, however, that give this gin its depth and character. All macerated and distilled separately, the Thyme, Basil and Fennel add the herbal, leafy and yet spicy, base, with an aniseed note, whilst the Pink Grapefruit, Eucalyptus and Mint explode upon the palate with zingy, zesty citrus and leafy mint.

 

To the nose, this gin evokes a very typical French bouquet garni, with exotic spice and citric notes.

 

The taste offers a lovely, creamy spice with bright grapefruit and citrus freshness, and can be drunk alone over ice, however, its powerful punch also lends itself to blending well with a premium Mediterranean tonic and cinnamon or cassia to garnish. There is, however, an alternative. It also lends itself to a soft sparkling wine or champagne mixer, once again, lifting itself above the run of the mill pink gins on the market today.

 

With the trend clearly indicating a vogue for anything pink, with regard to alcoholic beverages, you may assume that this is a modern take with regards to gin, however, the concept actually dates back to the 19th Century, when bitters were added to traditional gins to give them a boost of flavour, and the subsequent pinkish hue. Today however, it’s more likely that red Juniper berries are used, as in the case of Terre de Mistral.

 

The well balanced taste fluctuating between the refreshing pink grapefruit and the heat from the pink peppercorns also exhibits a lasting and polished finish. 

 

As a ‘gin connoisseur’ this rose comes highly recommended, and it’s worth noting, they also produce a Cuvée Mistral which is certainly on my ‘must try’ list. 

 

 

Editor’s note – Stanna has a great deal of knowledge about the fine arts, cuisines, or an expert judge in matters of taste which makes her a connoisseur. She has written articles on food and beverage while she released a book titled  “Stop Whining and Star Wining” - A Wine drinker's Guide to Cypriot Wine. She travels for any excuse of a new experience in this field.
 

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