Say what? Mermaid gin is actually a thing

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Anna Brech
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Such is the world we live in right now that every time something arrives to blow our minds – mermaid toast, say – then another amazing invention comes along and trumps it.

Step forward Mermaids Gin, spirit of our dreams, which we’ve just discovered actually exists right here in the UK.

Brewed at the Isle of Wight Distillery in Ryde, this marvellous concoction takes its inspiration from ethereal creatures of the ocean deep. 

It even has its own logo that gives a nod to our favourite aquatic character and her gin-loving ways:

Wight Mermaids Gin, the brainchild of friends Xavier Baker and Conrad Gauntlett, is lovingly crafted from a stellar line-up of local botanicals. 

These include rock samphire hand-picked from the Isle of Wight’s southern chalk cliffs and Boadicea hops  grown at Ventnor Botanic Garden, a legendary island oasis that occupies its own micro-climate.

Naturally, juniper berries also feature in the mix, alongside English coriander seeds, fresh lemon zest and angelica root. Liquorice root, orris root, elderflower and grains of paradise complete the herbaceous recipe for exactly the right kind of mermaid-style alchemy.

The result is a liquor that’s infused with a subtle Isle of Wight accent, described as “a refreshing, smooth and slightly sweet peppery gin with hints of citrus”.

Just months after Wight Mermaids Gin launched last year, it was ranked one of the best craft spirits in the country in a closely contested Twitter poll.

“We’re extremely proud of our gin and saw this as a great opportunity to get people talking about it,” said Baker at the time. “For a young brand like us this is a massive accolade... It’s been fantastic.”

According to the pros at Gin Foundry, “Wight Mermaids Gin is refreshingly mild to taste. The bitter, citrusy hops underpin the whole flavour journey, carrying an almost bitter wheatiness with them. There is a hint of liquorice sweetness, though when sipped straight the grains of paradise drown out the rest of the pack.” 

If you fancy conjuring up a Mermaids & Tonic, all you need is “a sufficient measure of Mermaids Gin” to blend with a good quality tonic and add plenty of ice. Garnish with a sprig of samphire or a cucumber twist, throw in a couple of juniper berries and you’re good to go.

For something a bit bolder, the folks at the Isle of Wight Distillery recommend mixing Mermaids Gin with La Fee Absinthe and fresh kiwi slices, topped off with Fever Tree tonic.

The Little Mermaid’s Ariel would no doubt approve...

Images: iStock, Wight Mermaids Gin on Instagram @isleofwightdistillery


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Anna Brech

Anna Brech is a freelance journalist and former editor for Her six-year stint on the site saw her develop a vociferous appetite for live Analytics, feminist opinion and good-quality gin in roughly equal measure. She enjoys writing across all areas of women’s lifestyle content but has a soft spot for books and escapist travel content.