Bimini Coconut Gin is a new release from Round Turn Distilling, which is based in the lush, tropical climate of Biddeford, Maine. Our northeastern-most state may be a strange launching pad for such a spirit, but that hasn’t stopped Round Turn from taking the same base distillate used to make its flagship Bimini gin and introducing coconut flavor by way of fat-washing. What Bimini Coconut Gin doesn’t contain are any flavor extracts.
The nose is unsurprisingly dominated by coconut, but it’s the sort of sweet, freshly shaved variety you might encounter in a coconut cream cake rather than the sickly sweet suntan scent that haunts other products labeled “coconut flavored.” Sniff a little closer, and you’ll pick up traces of coriander and pepper.
The spirit has a pleasingly thick and fatty presence on the tongue. Despite the thoroughly tropical nose, it’s coriander and pepper that kick off the experience, and that sweet coconut only rises at the center where it’s buffeted by bitter hops and astringent grapefruit. The round coconut flavor continues toward the back, where it meets a powerful shock of juniper spice and the tart, bitter touch of grapefruit peel before a dryly spiced finish.
Yes, the coconut is indeed strong with this gin, but it’s not at all what you might expect from a spirit with “coconut” on the label. The experience is fresh, complex and multidimensional, and anything but a one-trick flavor pony.
Bimini Coconut makes for a great Gin and Tonic, in which its fresh coconut flavor shines, but also delivers enough juniper at the back to provide the proper, spruce-y backbone that every good G&T requires. It also makes a wonderfully divergent, borderline tropical twist on the Negroni, where the fresh coconut sweetness proves a marvelous companion to Campari’s bittersweet smack. The spirit’s surprising versatility is one more argument for its inclusion in your backbar, and a sign that it may see service far beyond the warm-weather months.
— 47% ABV