At the Altona Spirit Manufacture, Gin Sul is produced by hand, with great care and attention to detail, by Hamburg’s famous gin distillery. Gin Sul’s roots, however, lie almost 3,000 km to the south: on the wild Costa Vicentina in south-west Portugal.
Gin Sul is the Dry Gin from Hamburg (Germany), with roots in Portugal. A testament to our love for this beautiful country at the south-western tip of Europe. Simple, fresh and elegant.
Our exclusive dry gin is characterised by the finest botanicals, careful distillation in very small batches and subtle hints of Mediterranean citrus.
Juniper berries, coriander, fresh lemons from Portugal, rosemary, peppers, lavender, cinnamon and gum rockrose (Cistus Ladanifer) are just some of the ingredients which capture the ‘saudade’, or soulful longing, in Gin Sul.
The lemons which grow in the western Algarve are often as large as grapefruits, with peel as thick as one’s thumb, and a lemony taste that brings back childhood memories.
With our maceration, it’s the quality of these botanicals that matters, more than the variety of ingredients. ‘Simple is beautiful’ is our philosophy, especially with the superb organic junipers or the fresh rosemary, which go into GIN SUL.
The fragrant aroma as you travel from Setúbal to Sagres lies between honey and eucalyptus, and it’s the cistus or aromatic gum rockrose grown on the barren terrain of the steep cliffs along the Costa Vicentina - typically alongside lush juniper bushes - that we capture in Gin Sul.
Only 100 litres - that’s all our distillery’s copper still - crafted by Arnold Holstein in Markdorf on Lake Constance - can hold. Compared to the industry average, that’s what you might call a “homeopathic” production volume. En route to the “spirit pipe“, all the alcohol vapour must battle its way through what is known as an anisateur: a spirit tray, which in our bespoke distillation process, is filled with fresh lemon peel, rosemary and rose petals. The cold, clear and soft water from the Lüneburg Heath region, south of Hamburg, is blended with GIN SUL distillate in the Altona Spirit Manufacture to bring it to 43% strength. Thirty-three wells, bored to a depth of up to 326 metres, supply water from the shingle of the Saalian Ice Age and the lignite sands below. Creating the ideal source of water for Gin Sul.
SAUDADE, DISTILLED IN HAMBURG.
Once you have been charmed by the subtle fragrance of the wild juniper and rock roses (Cistus ladanifer) that line the rugged cliffs on the west coast of Portugal, there will come that day when you will sense an unquenchable desire for the south – that wonderful sensation of wanderlust, wistfulness and melancholy known to the Portuguese as “Saudade”.
It is essentially impossible to translate Saudade. The Times even listed Saudade in the top ten "most untranslatable words in the world". The word describes a mixture of longing, wistfulness, a kind of Weltschmerz, and nostalgic melancholy.
In short: something unattainable, both beautiful and sad at the same time – like an Atlantic sunset.
More than 2,800 km further north in Hamburg, Germany, the flavour of Portugal is preserved in Gin Sul – handcrafted and distilled with carefully selected botanicals and the peel of fresh lemons from the Algarve. Enjoy Gin Sul with a premium tonic water, a twist of orange peel, some rosemary, plenty of ice and ideally with a sunset view over the Atlantic.