The first supply of samphire was from a small uninhabited island opposite Crete and the other herbs were harvested in Northern Euboea, whilst the orange blossom comes from the estate of the Katsos family in Chalkida. Euboea is a large island, partially attached to mainland Greece, with a temperate climate permitting luscious vegetation. The untamed breezes of its gulf mixed with the brisk winds of the Aegean traverse the terrain overgrown with pine trees, forest of fir and rare herbs, suffusing the mountainous ranges with a briny aroma of the sea.
Introducing “Grace Gin”, the brands’ rare and innovative spirit with unique greek aromas, robust character and lots of charisma
Straddling a triangle between the main thoroughfare Aplotaria and two lesser streets sits Vinius, an exciting and unexpected addition to Chios’ mercantile landscape. Vinius stocks a dizzying selection of fine wines, spirits, distillations, mustards, confectionery and exudes an aura of quality. During my last visit, I became aware of a new trend in Greek distillation, departing from ouzo and tsipouro to encroach on the territory of traditionally foreign spirits, such as vodka and gin.
There I discovered Grace Gin, enclosed in an impressive chunky bottle with an intriguing label featuring the 3 Graces in Victorian garb. It is pronounced a botanical gin and its horticultural pedigree enlists rock samphire, schinos, orange blossom and Greek myrtle, symbol of the graces. It is then double distilled with juniper.
It is pronounced a botanical gin and its horticultural pedigree enlists rock samphire, schinos, orange blossom and Greek myrtle, symbol of the graces. It is then double distilled with juniper
Gin is, of course, historically and temperamentally the backbone of Britain’s drinking culture, which makes the three female founders of Grace gin proud of their daring innovation.
They chose the name Grace, as it has many connotations of charm, charisma and allure.
Hara and Katerina Katsou possess a 60-year-old lineage of distilling and they met Lila Dimopoulou, married to a Scotsman with vast knowledge of the international beverage market in which Lila worked for many years, fourteen months ago with a shared passion to create a new gin, and pledged to have fun in creating it.
They began haphazardly, adding samphire never used before in gin to the plant mix, employing a water and steam pressured distillation, an extraction process used in aromatherapy. They maintain an alcohol level of 45,7 and skim off only the “heart” of the brew. The search for the correct botanical potion took five months, gripping them all with anxiety but a voracity and excitement that welded them into a group. They even wore the plant essences as fragrances to better sense them!
The first supply of samphire was from a small uninhabited island opposite Crete and the other herbs were harvested in Northern Euboea, whilst the orange blossom comes from the estate of the Katsos family in Chalkida