Pink Peppercorn & Thyme Gin Twist featuring Sheringham’s Kazuki Gin

It’s almost summertime. And in case you didn’t know, that means gin cocktails on the patio. Vancouver Island has a plethora (yes, I just said plethora) of gin distilleries with a great selection of sweet and bitter botanicals, florals and fruits, notes low to high and tried and tested methods of bringing us the best of the best from traditional London Dry to new world concoctions.

Of mention, is Sheringham’s latest – their Kazuki Gin. With a distinct floral undertone from Japanese cherry blossoms, distiller Jason MacIsaac has created a wonderful blend of Yuzu, grapefruit, green tea and a light taste of the traditional juniper. The taste starts bold, moves to round and finishes bright, green, leaving a bit of bittersweet lingering on the back of your tongue. This gin is equally good for sipping over ice as it is in a cocktail.

This recipe is heavily influenced by my good friend, Chef Jena Stewart. Several years ago, I helped her run her little restaurant, Devour, in Victoria. Our little space got HOT in the summertime and we would make home-made sodas to help conquer the swelter. I wanted a simple cocktail that didn’t overpower the already great taste of Kazuki Gin but still provided a perfect summer sipper. With a kick.

Pink Peppercorn and Thyme Gin Twist
Makes one cocktail

5 sprigs fresh thyme
½ tsp pink peppercorns
2 oz Sheringham’s Kazuki gin
1 oz fresh lemon juice
¾ oz pink peppercorn thyme syrup (below)
A few shakes Scrappy’s Bitters ‘Firewater’
Soda water (optional)
Lemon wheels and fresh thyme to garnish

In a cocktail shaker, gently muddle a few sprigs of thyme with the peppercorns. Add gin, lemon juice, syrup and bitters. Add ice and shake well. Double strain into a rocks glass with ice. Top with soda if you like and garnish with lemon wheels and fresh thyme.

Pink Peppercorn Thyme Syrup

Heat 1 cup water and 1 cup sugar in a medium saucepan over high heat until it just comes to a boil. Remove from heat and stir until the sugar has completely dissolved. Add a bunch of fresh thyme sprigs and 1 Tbsp pink peppercorns, slightly crushed. Let infuse for at least an hour, preferably overnight. Strain through a fine mesh and pour into a jar.

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Having lived on the West Coast all her life, Rebecca made the move from Vancouver to Vancouver Island in 2004 to pursue her love of fine food and expressive portraiture. A food and lifestyle photographer, her work can be defined ...

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