Very shortly, another Portuguese Gin will be launched, one of several new Portuguese brands appearing on the market since the beginning of 2017. Pukka Gin comes from Águeda, near Aveiro in Northern Portugal, and this latest competitor has its sights set on the rest of the world.
Pedro Vieira, the creator of Pukka Gin, lived for 7 years in Angola. There, and here, he has always sought happiness, something he thought he would only be able to do alongside his family and doing something he loved. With this in mind, he prepared for his return and began an adventure of producing a Gin from scratch.
Looking for something to stand out from the pack of existing Gins, he holed up in the beautiful Serra do Caramulo, where, using an old family still, began tests that lead to the Pukka Gin recipe. He began by distilling the pulp of the botanicals all together but quickly realized that what he was trying to achieve could only be done by individually distilling each botanical, and blending them at the end of the process. Pukka Gin is, therefore, a Gin that has been distilled nine times in a copper still, and always in small batches for greater quality control.
Pukka Gin gets its name from the Hindi and Urdu cultures, where it literally means “baked till hard” or more figuratively “totally formed”. In English slang, of course, it means the real thing or very good. Pukka was also the name of a champion racehorse owned by the Vanderbilts in the 1940s. As a kind of homage, the bottle’s label is dominated by the silhouette of a defiant and powerful horse.
Among its 8 botanicals, hibiscus, cardamom, ginger and orange peel apart from the omnipresent juniper, perform the main parts in this Gin.
On the nose and the palate, its shows it pedigree, being pungent and memorable. The juniper and cardamom notes are challenging at the start, backed up by the spicy freshness of the ginger and the citrus of the orange. The finish is dry and gently floral.