Since it first hit the shelves back in 2015, Four Pillars’ rich and syrupy Bloody Shiraz Gin has become a guaranteed bestseller. The base for many a delicious winter cocktail and a bar cart staple, it’s been an all-round good booze story (get it?) for the Melbourne-born distillery.
This year’s iteration of the sought-after gin launches on Saturday June 10 – World Gin Day – alongside the brand new, limited-release Bloody Pinot Noir Gin.
Both spirits are made using grapes from Yarra Valley wineries. The production process hasn’t changed much since 2015. The label’s high-proof Rare Dry Gin is poured over the grapes and left to steep for around seven weeks, over which time the gin leeches the fruit’s flavour, colour and natural sweetness.
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Four Pillars head distiller Cameron Mackenzie tells Broadsheet that if you like the Bloody Shiraz Gin, you’ll love the Bloody Pinot Noir. It’s “similar in colour … but in taste it’s a bit more delicate than the bold Bloody Shiraz Gin. It has about 15 per cent less sugar (all natural – no sugar is added to these gins) and the gins really mimic the table wines. Bloody Shiraz Gin is deeper and richer with a peppery spice, and Bloody Pinot Noir Gin has more aromas of strawberries and cherries and a more pronounced gin character.”
The Bloody Pinot Noir Gin is a lighter and paler iteration, with delicate notes of rose, cherries and strawberries, and a hint of acidity. Mackenzie suggests you serve it on the rocks with citrus, or even as a substitute for rum in a Pina Colada.
And while the distillery has upped production of its Bloody Shiraz Gin to keep up with demand, the Bloody Pinot Noir is strictly limited due to the scarcity of the grapes, which Mackenzie describes as “the holy grail of cool climate reds”. He says it’s all but guaranteed to sell out – so you’ll have to get in quick to avoid disappointment.
To celebrate the release of the two new gins, Four Pillars is throwing its inaugural Bloody Midwinter Gin Festival, with two months of events across Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria.
Four Pillars Bloody Pinot Noir Gin ($88) will be available for purchase from Saturday June 10, 2023, online or from the Four Pillars Healesville Distillery, Four Pillars Laboratory Sydney and Dan Murphy’s.