Hayman’s has everything a true classic gin needs: heritage, process and flavour. You might think flavour is the most important aspect, but you can’t get it right without the other components. Hayman’s was established in London in 1863 and remains a family business 5 generations later. The gin making follows the same two-day process it did 150 years ago. Whilst gin did not originate in the UK (it’s actually the original ‘Dutch courage’), London has 500 year gin distilling history. Hayman’s London Dry is characterised by bold juniper, fresh citrus and subtle spice. It is a dry, elegant and versatile gin which works well in a whole host of cocktails as well as the classic G&T. Hayman’s London Dry price point is a very reasonable £26 for 70cl. Read on for my Hayman’s London Dry Gin review.
My Thoughts on Hayman’s London Dry Gin
I am a long time gin lover and several years ago attended a guided gin tasting at Fortnum and Mason. It was a fun evening and very informative. I learned that to really taste a gin, you must first try it neat, only then do you try with ice, mixers etc. Nowadays there seems to be a fancy new gin flavour every week, from yuzu to parma violet, seaweed to nettles, lemon drizzle to unicorn tears. (Think I made that last one up? I didn’t). And whilst flavoured gins are fun to try, I always come back to the classic London dry.
Nose and Neat Flavour
The scent of Hayman’s London dry is fresh, crisp and slightly astringent. I could smell both juniper and citrus. Tasting the gin, the first flavour was a bold juniper, then the fresh citrus. Slowly this gave way to a gently warming spice and finally the earthy dryness. There is a lightly oily, rich mouthfeel when I tried it on it’s own, which is down to the quality of the ingredients and the 2-day artisan distillation process. Hayman’s London dry is based upon a wheat spirit and just 10 botanicals. They are juniper, coriander, lemon peel, orange peel, angelica root, cinnamon, cassia bark, liquorice, nutmeg and orris root.
Hayman’s London Dry in Cocktails
I tried Hayman’s London Dry as the classic G&T with one third gin and two thirds tonic. Then several different cocktails and it worked very well. This is a great classic to have at home due to it’s dry, elegant and versatile characteristics. The bottle is the standard Hayman’s shape of a rectangular cuboid with a long neck and elegant cork stopper. I serve my G&T’s in Hayman’s 1863 highball glasses, a very pretty style which draws inspiration from a late 19th Century design found in the family archives. They’re not just pretty though, they’re also technically designed for the perfect G&T. They hold 300ml which is ideal for 50ml of gin (1/3), 100ml of tonic (2/3) and ice. They are available along with other branded accessories from the Hayman’s distillery shop.
About Hayman’s of London
The Hayman gin distilling story starts in 1863 when pharmacist James Burrough, opened a small distillery in Cale Street, Chelsea. He experimented with a number of gin recipes and pioneered a drier style now known as London Dry Gin. James was the great grandfather of Christopher Hayman and the Hayman family have been distilling gin ever since. Today Hayman’s is based in Balham, South West London, only a few miles from the original family distillery in Chelsea. The distillery (repeatedly voted ‘London’s Favourite Gin Distillery’ on Trip Advisor) is open to the public for tours, experiences and events.