Jindea: A London Dry gin, made with first flush Darjeeling Tea
Many readers will know Matthew Dakers as the person whose tireless efforts as ambassador put Chartreuse firmly back on the UK’s cocktail map a few years ago. After parting company with the mountain monks, Matthew went on to work for Stoli and then Emporia Brands, and now, he is launching his own gin.
The name ‘Jindea’ is a portmanteau of ‘Juniper’ and the French words for India and tea, which provides a fairly accurate picture of the brand, as it is made in an alembic still in France, with juniper and first-flush Darjeeling tea as its main botanicals.
In particular, Goomtee Exotic Thunder first flush tea. Goomtee Exotic Thunder is a single estate tea, grown organically and at high altitude in the stunning Kurseong Valley. As with any first flush tea, Exotic Thunder has a very short harvest time and is only carefully plucked for two weeks in March.
Once brewed, Exotic Thunder produces a vibrant and glossy tea, reminiscent of pale honey and possessing the aroma of apricots. The infusion is smooth and crisp, with hints of grapes and the balanced astringency typical of first-flush Darjeeling teas.
Jindea’s other botanicals are lemon, grapefruit, coriander, ginger, fennel, cardamom, cinnamon, and angelica. Maceration lasts between three and five days, followed by pot still distillation.
Matthew told us this about the resulting liquid:
“We now have a 10 botanical London dry gin made with an alembic copper still. Juniper is the main botanical and first flush Darjeeling is the second. We used both lemon and grapefruit. Lemon was amazing on the nose and grapefruit was amazing on the taste. We said fuck it why don’t we use both! The rest of the botanicals have been chosen to complement each other and make the profile we were looking for. A classic style of gin with a juniper lead, citrus and spice and the Darjeeling tea giving an amazing sweetness to the overall finish.”
Jindea will be available from Emporia Brands, and the usual distributers, from April 24th onwards. We encourage you to taste it as soon as you can. We also encourage you to resist any effort on Matthew’s part to adopt the nickname ‘Exotic Thunder’.