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Combining Peruvian and British spirit traditions – and after plenty of experimentation – distiller Alexander James has created a London Dry gin made on a base of Quebranta grapes, which have been used to produce the iconic Peruvian spirit pisco for centuries.


In fact, one of the first recorded recipes for gin, which dates back to 1495, reveals it was originally made on grapes. Having adapted a 400-litre Portuguese copper pot still called Endeavour, Alex started working on different pisco, base spirit and gin distillations. “I knew I wanted to make a London Dry gin, but why would you make a really good pisco and then get rid of all those fruity, floral notes?”


Finally, he came up with a flavour profile he was happy with. By bringing forward the juniper and balancing the pisco with botanicals, London to Lima’s first spirit – Glacier Adventure – was born.


London to Lima Gin truly took me on an adventure! The Peruvian native Quebranta grapes used to create pisco, which is the base spirit for this gin, allows for a complex playground of flavours. I noticed some floral and fruity notes with apples and grapes on the nose and immediately connected them with the pisco base. I expected to get a bit of that overpowering alcohol burn, which I have found in another grape-based spirit, grappa, but was pleased to find the fruity notes accompanied by citrus and juniper aromas, customary to gins. I found this combination exciting and original. Surprisingly, I got a little whiff of chocolate notes and went back for another sniff or two, trying to catch it again.

I haven’t come across grape-based gins too often, so London to Lima caught my tastebuds’ attention right away. The fruity undertone carried through the length of the sip. At first, the fruity taste tricked me into thinking I was tasting a pisco, but it quickly changed into spiciness, filling my mouth with adventurous black pepper, coriander seed and cinnamon seasonings. After the spice treatment, I was in for another ride. The spices exploded into a heat sensation, derived mainly from the pink peppercorn, and gently ignited my tastebuds towards the destination. The heat was then accompanied by the juniper, giving the palate a medium to long-lasting finish with juniper and citrus notes.

London to Lima is a complex gin, offering a round trip of flavours between said cities, and is best enjoyed while researching flights for your next holiday!

mika ammunet
Gin Society Expert





Lots of citrus on the nose - lime zest and sweet orange with a slight anise touched spice note and hint of hay hovering in the background.

London to Lima’s nose is quite complex with a lot of working parts. It’s almost too brief to summarize it in the one sentence above. Certainly London to Lima Gin leads with a lot of citrus. I get hints of lime leaves, lime zest and a sweeter hint of mandarin orange. The underlying spice/herbal note is a bit more difficult to place so exactly. At first nose it suggests anise or myrtle anise, but there’s echoes of dried toasted coriander, piperine-like menthol, and a grassy, slightly hay-like note suggestive of apple brandy.

The palate is moderately more-traditional - juniper is present, but it’s a creamy note of pink peppercorn and the base Pisco that is worthy of remark.

I think the palate is where London to Lima Gin shows off the full Peruvian story that Alex wanted to tell. Albeit subtly - the entire palate has a background note of Pisco. But if you’re expecting full throttle Pisco, you’re looking in the wrong place. It’s like Pisco sipped with an ice cube, but the ice cube is pretty much entirely melted. The quality of the flavor is still there, but it’s muted.

Botanically, there’s a lot of spicy notes early. Black pepper, coriander seed, cinnamon bark, and crushed juniper rush back from the tongue to the throat where there’s a lot of botanical warmth.

Mid-palate London to Lima Gin becomes a bit more citrusy. Orange and lime zest come through with a bitter note, with a slight cranberry-like bitterness. Pink peppercorn emerges from the spice melange at first taste and becomes the somewhat dominant note in a very peppery finish.

The finish is moderate in length with notes of black peppercorn and Pisco.


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