By Guest Blogger Venetia De Ritter
Having been unveiled this month as the face of the new £10 note, there is no doubt that Jane Austen personifies the British ‘spirit’. But Austen might be a little surprised to discover that her reputation also extends to one of England’s best-loved spirits, gin.
The creators of Bath Gin, also dubbed ‘A Gin of a Different Persuasion’, have opted to reveal Austen’s cheekier side. Gone are the days of awkward flirtation between Elizabeth and Darcy, and instead we are met with the amusing image of a winking, and slightly tipsy Jane plastered on the front of the bottle.
Plastered being the operative word. It is indeed apt, since the author lived in Bath for five years before her father’s death (we promise it wasn’t because of the gin). Jokes aside, the notion behind this drink is truly Romantic, giving it an authenticity that lingers long after the taste of fresh alcoholic piquancy.
Here’s a recipe that is bound to make any gin aficionado’s taste buds fizz:
Austentacious Plum, Ginger and Lime Cocktail
Bath Gin, to taste
2 plums, halved and pitted
2 inches fresh ginger, peeled and grated
Juice of 1 lime
3 tablespoons soft light brown sugar
1/2 cup water
450ml tonic water
Combine the plums, ginger, lime juice, sugar and water in a pan and stew until soft. Let the mixture cool slightly, then place in a blender and puree until smooth. Strain the mixture through a fine mesh sieve and discard the pulp. Pour a good glug (I used about 50ml) of the strained plum puree into each glass and top with gin and tonic water to taste.
Bath Gin is available to sample as part of the Bath Bites Food & Drink Fair for the duration of the festival, so make sure you head over to the Gin Palace and get your mitts on a bottle.