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D.C.’s New Columbia Distillers will release its very first limited edition seasonal gin on Saturday.
The spring/summer Green Hat Gin is more citrusy and floral than the D.C. distiller’s signature gin thanks to cherry blossoms, three types of citrus peel, rosemary, and a bit of pepper. It’s also got a slightly higher alcohol content (90 proof vs. the signature’s 83 proof). Co-founder John Uselton recommends it in a Gin Rickey or Southside cocktail.
The seasonal gin will first become available for purchase at New Columbia’s distillery at 1832 Fenwick St. NE at 1 p.m. on April 20. Beginning next week, expect to find it at bars, restaurants, and liquor stores like Batch 13 on 14th Street NW and Schneider’s of Capitol Hill. The distillery is producing about 850 bottles.
Meanwhile, Uselton tells Y&H that he and partner Michael Lowe have already started experimenting on a fall/winter gin, which will likely be released in November. The booze will be aged at least three months in apple brandy barrels supplied by Right Proper head brewer Nathan Zeender (also behind WildCraft Soda), who used the same barrels to age beer.
Uselton says the botanicals they plan to use in the fall gin are a lot heftier and pronounced, and the barrel-aging process will round the flavors out. As for what those botanicals are, Uselton won’t say: “I have never seen a gin with some of the botanicals we’re using for it,” he says, “so I’d like to keep it secret.”
Photo of Michael Lowe and John Uselton by Darrow Montgomery. Photo of Green Hat Gin courtesy New Columbia Distillers