Gin science: Scottish researchers create a plant library

Scientists have created a vast library of Scottish botanical plants to help the nation’s gin producers experiment with flavours and create new products. Researchers at Edinburgh’s Heriot-Watt University spent three years distilling and cataloguing 72 plants that could be grown sustainably in Scotland. There are dandelion nettle, lavender and the chagga mushroom, which grows on birches.

The goal is to create new botanical gins and liqueurs by reducing “trial and error”. In the United Kingdom, about 70% of the gin consumed is produced in Scotland. Sales are expected to reach £1.5 billion by 2020, well ahead of whisky sales.

Each of the 72 plants was distilled individually and their taste, aroma and mouthfeel were recorded by the team at the International Brewing and Distillation Centre (ICBD) in Heriot-Watt.

Today, researchers want to make the library more accessible and hope to add more plants, nuts and flowers. All this makes you want to visit them !

Don’t drink and drive. Enjoy responsibly.