Anty Gin : Ant-flavoured Gin
The world's first gin infused with the 'essense' of ants, known as Anty Gin.
Anty Gin is a joint venture between experimental Copenhagen-based Nordic Food Lab and the world’s first gin tailor, The Cambridge Distillery.
Anty Gin is made with red wood ants and botanicals.The process involved collecting more than 6,000 red wood ants from the forests of Kent, England and creating an ant concentrate by mixing them with Bulgarian juniper berries, wood avens (a perennial forest herb), common nettle (Urtica dioica), and alexanders seed (a biennial wild relative of celery), along with a 100 percent organically-grown English wheat as the base for the anty gin.
Each bottle of Anty Gin will contain the essence of approximately sixty-two wood ants. The red wood ants were chosen for their citrus flavour, caused by the formic acid they produce. Formic acid, the inbuilt defense mechanism for ants, is a very reactive type of organic compound, particularly when combined with alcohol. When alcohol and formic acid are brought together they produce a range of aromatic esters (compounds that produce smells and flavors) that enhance the taste of fermented or distilled drinks.
William Lowe from The Cambridge Distillery said: "The reason people use ants is they have a very specific flavour which is best described as a citrus flavour. We did a lot of research and found that the reason ants taste like citrus is because they spray formic acid as a method of defence."
The first commercial batch of Anty Gin will produce only ninety-nine bottles, at a retail price of £200 GBP (€250) per bottle. Learn more at: http://www.cambridgedistillery.co.uk/antygin/
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