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Our Co-Authored series embodies the creative power of our area's most talented bartenders, pitting them against each other in a competition where the winner gets to co-write a gin with us.
Jonathan developed a gin with us that is complex beyond measure, incorporating fresh curry leaves, lemongrass, nutmeg, pink peppercorn, and eucalyptus into the distillation process. We then added a touch of saffron at the end, lending a luxurious mouthfeel and long finish. Bottled at 94 proof, the tasting notes are too complex to write on paper. You've got a tart, brightness from the lemongrass with a dusty, earthy flavor from the nutmeg. The curry leaves leave you tasting exotic spices but without the heat you'd expect to go with it. This is a limited release so don't miss out on a once in a lifetime gin.
SEE BELOW FOR THE FULL STORY AND DESCRIPTION OF HOW THIS SERIES CAME TO BE
When we decided to throw 'another' cocktail competition it wasn't to get a few minutes in the limelight for our brand and give the winner a cool T shirt, we wanted it to mean something. What's a great story without great characters? And how can you have context in a story if there are no interactions and no relationships made? Enter the Co-Author, our collaborative partner in crime and creative force behind this limited edition series of gins.
With entries collected and many cocktails judged, four finalists were chosen to compete head to head. The competition itself was a story all on it's own; hectic, loud, fun, and exhausting. With a combination of metrics including public votes and sales, Jacob Lichty emerged our winner for 2017 with his 'Barreled Bouquet' using our Woodcut Barrel Rested Gin. All finalists went home with gin and cash prizes but the grand prize was only just beginning to take shape.
The goal was to create a new gin, one that harnessed the creative talents and passion of our winner and that was different than anything else on the market today. Jacob, or as you will see on the bottle 'James Wolf', heads the bar at a small izakaya in Seattle and his interest in Japanese ingredients is what formed Volume 1's unique flavor profile. Yes, our winner is also an author when he's not behind the bar and James is his pen name (we found this out later, adding a great twist to the story!). This gin uses fresh shiso leaf, ume flower tea, cubeb berry, fennel, caraway, sweet orange, and juniper.
Only available during 2018 and in limited quantity, this year's Co-Authored Gin is definitely a new chapter for us as well as our winner and we couldn't be more pleased at the result. The spirit is floral and earthy, with an invitingly silky quality to it. It's as delicate as some of the finest Japanese ingredients and garnishes and should be treated as such.
With the competition wrapped up for 2017, keep an eye out later this year as we start looking at Volume 2.
SOME INTERESTING SUBTEXT IN OUR LABELING OF VOLUME 1: YOU'LL SEE ON THE FRONT THAT THE DRAWINGS AT THE BOTTOM INCLUDE SHISO LEAVES AND OTHER BOTANICALS USED IN THE GIN. ON THE BACK OF THE LABEL, THE STORY WAS WRITTEN ENTIRELY BY OUR CO-AUTHOR. IN BETWEEN OUR TWO SIGNATURES YOU'LL SEE THE KANJI FOR THE NUMBER 7 IN A SMALL CIRCLE. THIS IS SYMBOLICALLY IMPORTANT FOR JAMES WOLF AS HE IS RELEASING 7 BOOKS IN 7 YEARS, IT IS ALSO CONSIDERED TO BE A VERY LUCKY NUMBER IN JAPANESE CULTURE. 7 IS ALSO THE NUMBER OF BOTANICALS USED IN THIS GIN, AND IF YOU REALLY WANT TO STRETCH THINGS (AND THIS WAS NOT PLANNED), OUR FIRST BOTTLING TOTALED 241 FINISHED BOTTLES. 2+4+1=7.