Christmas Gift Guide for Gin Lovers & Cocktail Ideas

I am not going to lie to you. I can get quite excited when the festive season is coming. But it has nothing to do with singing carols 24/07, wearing Christmas jumpers, or put a big tree up.

It has more to do with the creative ways we can find to make family and friends happier during the holiday. It is different for everyone. I know.

As a gin-enthusiast, it’s not a complete Christmas experience for me if there is no G&T. And I always think that a nice bottle of outstanding gin makes the best present in the festive period. After all, gin is an elegant and timeless pressie to give to family and friends at any time of the year.

In 2020, I have decided to prepare a gin-theme gift guide featuring a “travel around the Gin world”. They are all represented by independent craft distilleries that combine local traditions with the local spices and botanicals. It’s just a join!

Six countries are being represented in this Christmas Gift Guide for Gin Lovers. Help yourself and do not forget the tonic and your favourite garnish! It’s gin o’clock!

Roku Gin | Japan

It’s not a secret that I am totally obsessed with Japanese culture, food, and traditions. It’s no different when it comes to drinking. I fell for the taste and history of Roku Gin a quite long time ago. Suntory has a long tradition of producing the finest spirits in wine in Japan.

Cocktail idea – Negroni

Roku Gin is the result of a history with over 100 years of expertise. This artisanal gin is crafted with six different Japanese botanicals cultivated over four seasons -Sakura flower, Sakura leaf, Yuzu peel, Sencha tea (green tea), Gyokuro tea (refined green tea), and Sanshō pepper.

Mermaid Gin | Isle of Wight, The UK

If you are looking for a national gin, here is a little gem from Britain. Mermaid Gin was created by the long-time friends Xavier Baker (brewer) and Conrad Gauntlett (a winemaker).

Are you looking for a Sustainable Gin? – It’s just great to know that Mermaid Gin has a plastic-free bottle using recycled materials only. Including a planted-based seal, and a sustainably sourced cork and wooden stopper. This distillery operates a “refill exchange scheme” for residents of the Isle of Wight

Mermaid Gin is produced at the Isle of Wight’s only distillery, and it contains Mermaid’s kiss – the famous latter foraged from Isle of Wight’s cliffs.

This hand-crafted small batch is distilled using 10 ethically-sourced botanicals – juniper, rock sapphire, grains of paradise, organic lemon zest, angelica roots, orris root, coriander, licorice root, elderflower, and Boadicea hops ( both the latter from the Island of Wright).

This enables the customers to exchange used bottles at the distillery and receive a £2 discount toward their next purchase. Brilliant!

Cocktail Idea – Gin & Tonic

  • 25-50ml Mermaid Gin
  • 100-150ml Premium Indian Tonic
  • 4 Juniper Berries (crushed if preferable)
  • Cucumber twist
  • Serve over ice

Bobby’s | The Netherlands & Indonesia

Did you know that over 25% of Dutch people have family links with Indonesia? Described as “Dutch courage mixed with Indonesian spirit”, Bobby’s Schiedam Dry Gin combines the history of two countries – The Netherlands and Indonesia. Bobby’s Schiedam Dry Gin only uses organic ingredients to create its characteristic scent and taste.

Bobby’s is named after the brand founder’s grandfather who immigrated to Holland in the ’50s. He was also the inspiration behind’s this finest gin’s original recipe that blends a base of juniper with whole clove, cubeb citrus, and finishing with a bite of pepper.

This is a gin with only organic ingredients to create its characteristic scent and taste. The recipe that certainly will inspire me to make many cocktails this Christmas.

Cocktail IdeaB & T – Festive Christmas Cocktail

First, prepare your garnish with a clove-studded orange slide to add fragrance. Pour 50ml of Bobby’s Schiedam Gin into a glass full of ice. Add 150 ml Indian tonic for a proper balance between gin and tonic.

Amazzoni Gin | Brazil

C’mon, you were all expecting this! Yes. I am quite proud to introduce to you this amazing Brazilian Gin. I can’t even explain how amazing is to have discovered a hometown’s crafted gin this year- Amazzoni Gin.

Brazil is highly associated with its famous drink made of sugar cane– caipirinha. The idea of having a gin produced on a typical Fazenda (the farm in Portuguese) named Cachoeira – located in the Paraiba Valley, sitting halfway between Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo.

Cocktail Idea – Gin Caipirinha

Amazzoni is blended with juniper berries, laurel, lemon, coriander, tangerine, and pink pepper. Plus, the unique ingredients from the heart of Amazonian forests such as cocoa, Brazil nut, maxixe, Victoria Regia, and Cipó-crave.

Stranger & Sons | Indian

I love the usual Indian flavours and spices. It’s one of my favourite gastronomy. Now, Indian gin also stole my heart. Here is a craft one that comes from Goa – Stranger & Sons.

The history of this fine craft-gin has its foundations in storytelling about mysterious and mythical creatures and the abundance of Indian botanicals.

If gin is not the most popular drink of choice, the independent distillery The Third Eye has certainly the luck of being in Goa – packed with the rich influence of Portuguese and Indian cultures; which certainly inspired this small-batch and premium gin. It’s quite interesting to read about the history of the Saigal family and its delicious gin.

Cocktail Idea – Indian Breakfast Martini

Botanicals – Juniper, Indian citrus peel mix, coriander seed, nutmeg, mace, Indian black pepper, Angelica root, cassia bark, and licorice root.

Pienaar & Son | South Africa

Here is the fun adding to this gin—themed gift guide. Pienaar & Son is a refreshing gin packed with spices and citrus. It’s exactly what you would expect from an African craft gin. I love it!

The spirit of Cape Town comes from a small craft distillery that introduces a creative way of presenting modern spirits. Pienaar & Son combines 40 years of a father’s distilling experience with his son’s passion for art and science. A family recipe that can’t go wrong.

Botanicals – juniper, coriander seeds, Angelica root, Cassia bark, cardamon pod, almond, allspice, French orange peel, ginger, grapefruit peel, vanilla, and rosemary.

Cocktail Idea – Savanna Spritz

*I received Mermaid and Bobby’s Gin complimentary for testing purposes. 

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What is your favourite G&T for this Christmas? Let me know in the comments!

Simone Ribeiro
I'm a Brazilian journalist based in West Midlands. In Brazil, I have worked with International Trade and Logistics publications.

Now in the UK, I keep writing and I dedicate myself to a new project : Midlands Trade - a blog focused on business in Europe and Brazil. It's also supporting small businesses throughout the #MeetTheBusiness.

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