Strawberries and cream are a kind of edible mascot when it comes to the championship, Wimbledon, starting today. Like so many events in 2020, Wimbledon was completely canceled due to COVID-19. However, Hugh Lowe Farms, delivering all the strawberries, had them already ready for use. To get a sense of what kind of, yes, jam they were in, it has been reported that 61,700 kg of strawberries and 7,000 liters of cream are supplied for each two-week tennis tournament at Wimbledon. Sipsmith Gin so at least an opportunity for the fruit part.
“We managed to get a load of these strawberries and get them right into the quiet to see what would happen,” says Sipsmith Master Distiller and drinking historian, Jared Brown. “We changed our classic London Dry formula a little, stuffed all the strawberries in, also gave a little mint to it – another great Wimbledon ingredient – and distilled it. The result is a beautiful, classic London Dry gin, but with all these fresh berry notes to it. ”
Gin purists may spot the idea of strawberry gin, but just because there is fruit in gin, does not mean that it is one of the clumsy, modern spirits that shuns the juniper. “It’s not cute. It is by no means a liqueur, ”Brown explains. “We’ve got a couple of consumers sending us emails saying, ‘Since this says strawberry, we were expecting something sugary – it’s wonderful!’ We do not really do that [sweet] types of gin at Sipsmith. We wanted to make a really classic gin. ”
Play, set, strawberry!
Sipsmith, who recently earned one B Corp quality certification, identified a particular kinship with the people of Wimbledon. “They are very close [geographically] to the distillery, ”says Brown. “They also share our uncompromising value. Here is the only tennis championship in the world held on grass. The day after the finals every year, groundskeepers have a tradition: they come out of this big book and they start writing in the book about everything that needs to be corrected and everything they have noticed that can be done better. ”
Sipsmith is now the official gin at Wimbledon with a partnership that should last for at least five years. To celebrate accordingly, Brown went to Center Court to arrange a Martini. (The video can be seen here on Sipsmith’s Instagram.) Brown jokingly says he hopes Rufus, the resident Wimbledon hawk, will fly his next decoration in. Sipsmith does not make slapdash. In 2009, they became the first commercially licensed gin distillery in London since the early 1800s. To promote their partnership with Wimbledon, they tapped Cannes lion award-winning agency Ogilvy UK for the commercials. The naughty, animated shorts follow Mr. Swan, expressed by British comedian Julian Barratthrough the distillery and most recently a series promoting ‘The Official Tennis of Sipsmith Gin’, which can be seen here.
There are plans to make Strawberry Smash every year. “As the ground guards do at Wimbledon, just when we’re done doing this, we’ve been looking for ways to make it even better by taking it one step higher next year. We all have intentions of doing that every year. ”
Of the gin itself, Brown describes that “there is such a marked berry in the nose. On the palate it is there, but it is sublimated because gin is still definitely a classic London Dry. Going forward, he says that every iteration remains at its core a classic London Dry.
While Strawberry Smash is a new innovation, the use of strawberries in gin distillation goes back centuries. In late 2020, Brown and his wife Anistatia Miller announced The distillery in London. This is a carefully decoded transcription of original manuscripts on gin – most of them written in code! – dates back at least to 1639 from an edition originally published by the Worshipful Company of Distillers in London. It mentions a gin recipe using juniper berries, orange and lemon peel. After distillation, they added strawberries and raspberries. “So how far back do strawberries go in gin? It actually goes back to before the word ‘gin’. ” The distillery in London The 2020 edition of Brown and Miller is available hereand the proceeds go to the charity Worshipful Company of Distillers, which benefits hospitality industries affected by the pandemic.
Sipsmith Strawberry Smash, bottled with 40% ABV, is available at the Wimbledon Championships in select stores in the UK and will soon be sold in limited quantities in the states at a suggested retail price of $ 29.99.
Sipsmith Wimbledon Collins
- 2 parts Sipsmith Strawberry Smash Gin
- The juice of half a lemon
- The simple syrup
- fresh strawberries for garnish
- lemon twist, to garnish
Combine gin, lemon and sugar syrup in an ice-filled highball glass. Top with chilled soda. Garnish with fresh strawberries and a lemon twist.
Brown suggests a twist on this recipe using a few frozen strawberries in the mix. “When strawberries are frozen, they absolutely burst with color and flavor … You get a beautiful blush Collins when you pour it into an ice-filled glass and fill it with soda.” He advises taking a spoon up and down inside the glass when it is full, just enough to mix it gently and then garnish with a fresh strawberry.
Strawberry Basil Gin Smash
- 2 1/2 parts Sipsmith London Dry Gin
- 1 part lemon juice
- 1/2 part simple syrup
- 12 basil leaves plus one for garnish
- 5 strawberries plus one for garnish
Muddle basil leaves and strawberries in a cocktail shaker. Add ice cream and the other ingredients and shake well. Double strainer in an ice-filled glass. Garnish with a basil leaf and cut strawberries gently.
Strawberry Smash Club
- 2 parts Sipsmith Strawberry Smash Gin
- ½ part dry vermouth
- 1 part fresh lemon juice
- The simple syrup
- handful of fresh strawberries
- 1 egg white (or vegan alternative)
- black pepper, for garnish
Add gin, dry vermouth, fresh lemon juice, sugar syrup, a few strawberries and an egg white (or vegan alternative) in a cocktail shaker and dry shake (without ice). Then add ice and shake again (wet shake) before straining into a chilled compartment. Garnish with a fresh strawberry and crack of black pepper.