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Self-described “gin obsessive” Bronwyn Schrocker is truly passionate about gin, boasting a personal collection of over 90 bottles either gifted to her or collected from around the world. Here, she explains why it’s her spirit of choice.
What was your first proper introduction to gin?
I really first found out about gin because every year we do a girls’ trip to Singapore. One night we went to one of the popular bars there – a whisky bar. We all thought, what should we drink? Someone said, “Let’s get a Gin Fizz.” I didn’t know what it was but got one. Every night after that we went to the same bar and kept ordering them.
What does your gin collection look like? What’s in there?
I really have something from everywhere – from all around the world. Some of them are from my in-laws, who are from the UK. My father-in-law also buys me all things gin – like gin-infused chipolata sausages for breakfast and gin lip gloss. My sister also bought me gin Turkish delight from Scotland. My last Gin Society delivery was my 92nd bottle of gin.
What do you love about gin as a spirit?
It’s so clean and very easy to drink. It’s interesting as well because there are so many ways to drink gin. There are so many out there and they’re all so different. It’s also just an interesting thing to collect. Before gin, it was shoes – and I had 97 pairs of those!
What draws you to a gin? What do you look for when choosing one?
I do like classic gins. I like French gins because they’re nice and soft and floral. I love Italian ones because they’re easy drinking and perfect for the classic G&T with a bit of lemon. Then you get to your heavier, spicy ones for winter nights.
Any current favourite gins?
At the moment, it’s a Norwegian one – Bareksten. It’s a little bit woody. I just add some beautiful mixed berries to it. The other is a French one called Generous, which comes in a beautiful bottle. It’s nice just with a little bit of lemon. So light, so easy. It’s a happy kind of drink.
There are some great gins made locally in the Swan Valley too, at Old Young’s Distillery, The Great Northern Distillery, Swan Valley Gin Co and Sin Gin Distillery.
Do you have a preferred way to drink gin or a go-to garnish and tonic?
I always try gins neat first. Then, sometimes I will search online to see what the gin’s signature serve is. Quite often, they’ll give you a few different ways to try it.
Then I’ll put something else in it that’s more to my taste. I always keep pink grapefruit, limes and oranges in the fridge. I also love just putting in some peach or some apple – just to try some different things.
For me, it’s a mood thing. In winter, while I was watching Game of Thrones, I threw in some star anise and a cinnamon stick. For romance movies, I keep the gin nice and light with lemon or berries. I tend to change my gins to complement the show.
Do you have a favourite gin-based cocktail?
My classic gin drink would probably be a G&T with a lemon, lime or piece of apple. Tonics are very important to me. I use Artisan, Fever-Tree, StrangeLove and East Imperial tonics.
What’s a really enjoyable gin experience you’ve had?
Recently, I went on a bit of a bar hop around Perth for a girlfriend’s birthday and I took her to all the gin places. I haven’t had a lot of Negronis before but I did try this chocolate Negroni, which had a wedge of Lindt orange chocolate and some rosemary in it. I could have sat there all afternoon drinking those.
If you could travel to anywhere in the world to sample gin, where would it be?
Scotland. I have quite a few Scottish gins and some of my favourites are from there. One of my friends, who’s from Scotland, actually brought into one of the distilleries up there – it’s called GlenWyvis. Scotland will probably be my next trip.
What do you like most about the Gin Society?
I love that it has gins from around the world that you can’t get here or see in bottle shops. I also love that I can chat to fellow gin lovers online and the service is so personalised.
Bronwyn’s Desert Island Gins
Tanglin Gin (Singapore) “It’s mysterious, spicy, oriental and reminds me of the curries in the hawkers’ markets. Plus, it has to be good for you as it contains the ‘#1 Immortality Chinese Herb’ from two forms of orchid. It reminds me of my love affair with Singapore, if I get homesick.”https://tanglin-gin.com/
Harahorn Gin (Norway) “Whenever I go to visit my friends in Norway, I love traipsing through the forest randomly picking wild berries, which are, of course, used in the making of this gin. I also can’t go past a folklore story, like the picture on their bottle.”https://harahorngin.com/
Isle of Harris Gin (Scotland) “I really enjoy Scottish gins but this is a head above the rest. The sugar kelp is natural and sustainable and is extracted from the deep underwater forests. It is nothing like you’ve tasted before. I think it would be perfect while laying on my deserted island. I only hope they grow grapefruit but, if not, the mango flavours on your palate should suffice.” https://harrisdistillery.com/