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#615

PRIDE PARADE

11 Nov 2018 By David Fuhrmann-Lim

7 Things You Need To Know About Singapore's Brass Lion Dry Gin.

You know the old adage ’bout how you wait ages for a bus, and then two come along at the same time? That’s the situation we Singaporeans find ourselves in now. We waited ages for our island’s first homemade spirits, and then suddenly we have two Singapore gins. (Tanglin Gin, situated in a shared distillery in Mandai, launched a few months back.)

And now we have Brass Lion, Singapore’s first-ever, self-contained distillery, a standalone building in Alexander Terrace. The 370 sqm micro distillery houses retail space, a bar, masterclass lab and a herb garden.

Jamie Koh, Managing Director of BLD, spent time in Germany’s Black Forest to learn about distillation (this other famous gin is linked to the Black forest), and she’s chosen to focus on a modern dry gin with botanicals that give a hat tip to Asia’s spice trade.

This Singapore Dry Gin is citrusy and floral, with a clean mouthfill and layers of undulating flavours. It’s gonna take pride of place in our bars soon, once they start brewing the new batches. I like it, and it’s easy to make cocktails with this (start with a G&T, natch).

Meanwhile, here are 7 other things you oughta know:

brass lion gin

They make the gin in small batches of 120 bottles each time. From start (picking flowers) to end (hand labelling), the process takes five days.

brass lion gin

The neutral spirit which is used to mascerate the botanicals is from Germany; it’s softer than most other spirits they tested.

The copper still is also from Germany, and it can hold 150 litres of spirit.

brass lion gin

There are 22 botanicals that make up the BL gin, including Angelica Root, Chrysanthemum Flowers, Tamarind, Pomelo Peel, Lemongrass, Orange peel, Ginger, Cubeb berries, Cardamom etc. The preponderance of citrus gives the spirit its lift.

There is a herb garden out back where they pick some of the botanicals used. (Note: Flowers are not mascerated as the process kills its delicate notes. Instead, flowers are steamed inside the still to extract its essence.)

brass lion masterclass1

In the R&D Lab there you can get a hands-on masterclass, blend your own gin and bottle it. It’s $160 for a two-to-three hour class, complete with a 500 ml bottle of gin to take home and two complimentary cocktails served at the tasting room.

brass lion gin

There is a gin bar on the second floor where you can order gin cocktails, including a Martini,  Negroni and even a Corpse Reviver. We recommend this: The Butterfly Pea G&T.

Each bottle (Brass Lion Singapore Dry Gin, Pahit Gin and Butterfly Pea Gin) is S$88. Distillery Tour (Saturday and Sunday, 3 to 5pm): $40.

Brass Lion Distillery, 40 Alexandra Terrace, Singapore 119933.

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