The Test Valley is in Hampshire and named after the river Test that meanders through the countryside, it’s hard to imagine a more quintessentially English place to make gin. Test Valley gin is an infused gin in the London Dry style and is bottled at 37.5%.
I’ve had a go at infusing gin myself and it can be a bit of a hit and miss business, so I take my hat off to anyone who can get it right, whether it’s through arduous experimentation or natural talent I don’t know, but this is what the creator Kate Griffin has done.
The gin is infused at Kate’s grandfather’s house by hand, which gives a nice family feel to the gin. No essences are used in the infusions, only the freshest locally sourced herbs will do, which come from the local Leckford Estate. Thyme and basil are the two powerhouses for the infusion, two herbs which I often like to use myself in cocktails.
Test Valley Tasting Notes
Nose: Complex, with hints of thyme
Palate: Warm, woody, with a hint of sweet herb
Finish: Fresh and subtly herbaceous
Average Price: £34.95 (or £39.95 incl p&p) available here
it This gin certainly makes a refreshing G&T, the recommended serve is to accompany with a sprig of thyme. Cocktail wise is works very well in one my own creations, the Mother’s Ruin -
In a highball glass muddle four or five basil leaves and 1cl of lime juice. Add ice and slowly poor 4.5cl of Test Valley gin over it. Top with soda to taste and as a finishing touch add a dash of Peychaud’s bitters. Give it and little stir and enjoy.