Edinburgh-based distillery Pickering’s Gin has created three new versions of its London Dry Gin for the Cunard cruise line — its biggest export order to date.
The collaboration involving “3 Queens Gin” has a personal connection for distillery founder Marcus Pickering who is a great nephew of a former Cunard Captain.
To coincide with the £40 million renovation of the Queen Victoria, the ship has been inaugurated with the very first batch serving of Queen Victoria Gin.
The two other gin versions are named after the Queen Elizabeth and Queen Mary 2 ships.
The three new gin blends were created with the ships’ routes in mind.
The Queen Victoria gin is said to have a hint of the Mediterranean with flavours of blood orange, lemon and olive leaf.
The Queen Elizabeth gin is said to have a “taste of Asia” with aromas of star anise, lotus root, lime leaf and cardamom.
The Queen Mary 2 gin is said to have a “hint of the Americas” with a taste of apple, cinnamon, cherry and raspberry leaf.
Marcus Pickering said: “Working with Cunard is a dream of mine and the ability for small companies like ours to work with a globally recognised cruise brand has been a revelation.
“It is proof that it is possible for David to play nicely with Goliath in such uncertain times, and deals like this really help to secure the future of our business.
“Being a small part of Cunard has delighted my family. I might not be steering the ship, but at least I can lubricate its passengers.”
Pickering’s great uncle George Gibbons captained Cunard White Star liners from 1909-1944.
Pickering’s other founder and gin distiller Matt Gammell said: “As a distiller, I wanted to turn Cunard’s vision of three distinct flavour profiles into reality.
“Each of the 3 Queens Gins contains an array of remarkable botanicals that really evoke the legacy of the ships.”
Captain George Gibbons and his great nephew Marcus Pickering: