Currently arriving on store shelves here in Oregon is a new gin that is perfect for the warmer months ahead. Rendle’s Original Gin is based upon a recipe with Indian origins from British World War II captain Frank Edgcumbe-Rendle, a member of the 16th Light Calvary, Indian Army that fought for the British Empire.
Frank’s son Chris discovered the recipe and then tinkered with it for about 2-1/2 years to perfect it. Chris then recruited Alan Shapiro and Mark Avellano to form the company Highly Spirited to begin distilling Rendle’s Original Gin. For now it’s being distilled on a contract basis in Fairfield, California at Frank-Lin Distillers. Of the three owners, Alan has established himself in the Pacific Northwest over the years in both beer and cider. His resume includes working for Merchant du Vin and has been an importer and most recently is the person behind Cider Summit, the popular cider festivals across the country.
Last year the trio launched Rendle’s Original Gin in Canada. There was some strategy to this decision. Since liquor stores are government controlled in Canada payment for goods are paid when received. “We wanted to make sure we got paid,” stated Chris on the financial realities of a start-up.
So what makes Rendle’s Original Gin unique? Frank was concerned that when he made his gin that it could be easily diluted. To curtail this possibility he decided to add hibiscus to the gin that gives the spirit its easy identifiable pink hue. Even when mixed into a martini the gin keeps its pink hue.
Beyond the hibiscus Rendle’s Original Gin uses the required juniper alongside coriander, lemon peel, cardamom, and aniseed. The result is a superior gin at 40% ABV that is great either for sipping or as the focal point in a cocktail. The nose on this gin is juniper forward but with a noticeable floral aroma. Then from the inclusion of the spices soft fruit flavors come through.
Look for Rendle’s Original Gin throughout Canada, Oregon, Washington, California, Michigan, and Illinois with more states to follow. The suggested retail price will be around $30 per 750 mL bottle.
D.J. is a Portland, Oregon based writer that spent his formative years in the Midwest. With over 25 years under his belt of drinking beer at festivals across America and the world, he has developed a strong appreciation and understanding of craft beer and the industry that surrounds it. He can be found in any of the great breweries or beer bars that make Portland the best beer city in the world. His writing can also be found in the archives of Northwest Brewing News and can be followed on Twitter and Instagram at @hopapalooza.