Review: St. Laurent Gin Vieux / by Jason Hambrey

Image courtesy of Distillerie du St. Laurent

Image courtesy of Distillerie du St. Laurent

1 Year; Ex-whisky barrel
Base spirit with botanicals
Distiller Distillerie du St. Laurent (Rimouski, QC)

Each month, a portion of the St. Laurent gin production is set aside to be matured in ex-whisky casks. After more than a year of maturation in the whisky barrel, the seaweed-infused gin picks up all sorts of barrel character. The botanicals are slightly altered from the standard St Laurent gin in order to match better to barrel maturation: this one uses juniper, coriander, angelica root, cassia bark, licorice, lemon, bitter orange, cubeb berry, grains of paradise, and laminaria seaweed (kombu).

Review (2021)

  • Batch: 0030

  • Bottling Code: N/A

  • Bottling Date: ~2021

This one carries a lot of the complex, integrated characters of the regular st. Laurent gin. But, it also has a nice waxy character, along with some really nice rye and barrel spices. The nose is waxy, woody, citrusy – and still bright with cucumber, juniper, and jalapeno pepper notes. The richness is terrific. The palate has a great texture, with the whisky barrel doing its work – grain notes, vanilla, floral notes, and coconut get added to the juniper, citrus, and spice of the gin. The finish is big but soft, with rye whisky spices and herbal and citrusy notes.

Many aged gins have a barrel character that completely dominates – to the point that they don’t work in a lot of classic gin cocktails. This one isn’t that way – the barrel complements and adds to the character of the gin, without dominating such that the character moves far away from a typical gin. Great stuff!

Also, I was surprised to find this at 47% ABV. It is softer than the regular 43% gin from St Laurent.

Very Highly Recommended.