Orkney: Orkney Gin Distillery

And as if one of the best whiskeys in the world wasn’t enough, Orkney is also famous for the latest craze of producing quality craft gins based on local botanicals and old viking distillation recipes. Orkney Gin Distillery is located right in the heart of Kirkwall, facing the harbor, it’s a small family-run operation, but they crank out quite a variety of gins. The gin brand is Kirkjuvagr which is the old Norse word for “Church Bay” aka the name of the Kirkwall’s harbor. The key botanical ingredient is the Angelica plant, grown on Orkney, as well as several other local wildflowers like Ramanas Rose, Burnet Rose and Borage. You get to sample four different gin distillations, including a super-kicking 57% alcohol (114 proof) Arkh-Angell gin. Perhaps I am not a big gin aficionado, but all of them felt a little rough and not smooth.