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15 best pink gins to mix up your G&Ts this summer and beyond

Whether you’re a gin connoisseur or simply up for tasting new flavours, these are the best tipples to try

Alicia Miller
Wednesday 08 June 2022 16:36
<p>From pink peppercorn to dragon fruit, even the most pink-averse classic gin fans can find a pour that will tick their boxes in this round-up </p>

From pink peppercorn to dragon fruit, even the most pink-averse classic gin fans can find a pour that will tick their boxes in this round-up

Fun, fruity and always ready to party – that’s pink gin in a nutshell, right? Well yes – and no. In just a decade this blush-hued spirit has gone from niche to ubiquitous and, in turn, the category’s diversity has exploded.

Some pink gins are dry, some are sweet. Some are fruity, some are herby. Some are made by big brands en masse, some are made by cool indie distilleries. These days, it’s become almost impossible to generalise about pink gins, except to say that they all come with a characteristic rosy hue – though even that’s not necessarily a given, as you’ll see from the list of our best pink gins below.

The most classic pink gins are infused with a single red-fruit flavour – usually raspberry or strawberry – that mingles in with a piney backbone of juniper. But more and more intriguing flavour profiles are hitting the market, from pink peppercorn to dragon fruit, rhubarb to wine. It’s good news for drinkers, as it really does mean there is a pink gin for everyone. Even the most pink-averse classic gin fans can find a pour that will tick their boxes, if they’re open to it.

Many spirits out there labelled as pink gin are actually closer to flavoured vodkas, because they lack the strong juniper character that makes gin, well, gin. But we think juniper is important, so when compiling our list of best pink gins we favoured bottles that put it front and centre.

We also generally awarded more points to gins that used natural fruit in their production process, rather than those that added a synthetic ‘pink’ flavouring afterwards.

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How we tested

We first tasted all our pink gins neat, then – because the spirit is most often enjoyed as a G&T – again with a quality Indian tonic. We made sure each gin tasted balanced and like the botanicals it contained (whether that was berries, grapefruit or even rose). Finally, we considered how much we’d enjoy drinking each gin again and again – in other words, did we like it enough to commit to buying a whole bottle?

All of our best pink gins for 2022 are tasty enough to be taken seriously. Not that you should. Whatever’s happened to the pink gin category over the past few years, the spirit is still about fun. So, find one you like the sound of, glug it into a chilled glass and get sipping – preferably out in the summer sunshine.

The best pink gins for 2022 are:

  • Best overall – Malfy Gin rosa, 70cl: £28, Tesco.com
  • Best new launch – Tarquin’s pink lemon, grapefruit and peppercorn gin, 70cl: £36, Tarquinsgin.com
  • Best for classic pink gin vibes – Manchester Gin raspberry infused, 50cl: £29.99, Kwoff.co.uk
  • Best for garden sipping – The Gardener small batch rose and honey Scottish pink gin, 50cl: £24.99, Virginwines.co.uk
  • Best drinks trolley brag – The Isle of Wight Distillery mermaid pink gin, 70cl: £37.99, Masterofmalt.com
  • Best for wine lovers – Chapel Down pinot noir, 70cl: £35, Chapeldown.com
  • Best exotic profile – Tarsier oriental pink gin, 70cl: £34.95, Masterofmalt.com
  • Best for be-ginners – L&C raspberry pink gin, 70cl: £39.99, Virginwines.co.uk
  • Best non-pink gin – Hernö pink BTL gin, 50cl: £33.99, Masterofmalt.com
  • Best for drinking with friends – Didsbury British bramble, 70cl: £29.95, Masterofmalt.com
  • Best quirky British botanicals – Shivering Mountain Peak District pink gin, 70cl: £39.50, Masterofmalt.com
  • Best for rhubarb lovers – Warner’s rhubarb gin, 70cl: £30, Waitrose.com
  • Best for classic gin fans – Conker spirit port barrel aged gin, 70cl: £47.99, Masterofmalt.com
  • Best for pink gin sceptics – Kyrö pink gin, 50cl: £24.75, Thewhiskeyexchange.com
  • Best for Gallic vibes – Salcombe gin rosé sainte Marie, 70cl: £37.45, Masterofmalt.com

Malfy Gin rosa

Best: Overall

Rating: 9.5/10

  • ABV: 41%
  • Size: 70cl

This, quite frankly, is a holiday in a glass. Malfy gin is made on the Amalfi Coast, and it certainly tastes like it – heady Italian grapefruit and lemon join bold juniper to make a transportive G&T that’ll whisk you straight to sunnier climes. It’s exactly what you’re looking for when it comes to aperitif hour. That tart freshness pairs a treat with canapes or – if you’re going Italian – cicchetti. We especially like ours with a spread of prosciutto, pecorino cheese and nocerella olives.

It’s delicious, but what made it win best-in-show in our round-up is its incredibly friendly price point. Whereas many of the best pink gins cost upwards of £35 per 70cl, this one is set firmly under the £30 mark. Which means there’s not an ounce of guilt when you pour yourself another round.

Tarquin’s pink lemon, grapefruit and peppercorn gin

Best: New launch

Rating: 9/10

  • ABV: 42%
  • Size: 70cl

We’re rather partial to a Tarquin’s flavoured gin – the brand always seems to nail it, whether bottling spirit infused with juicy blood orange or zingy yuzu. This recent release is no exception. We’ve tasted hundreds of pink gins over the years, and yet this one still manages to feel innovative. It doesn’t taste like a rework of the same old tricks – rather, it tastes like something new.

The secret is that Tarquin’s has ditched the typical pink gin berries to focus on citrus – rare pink lemons and pink grapefruit, plus fruity pink peppercorns. The result is a gorgeously aromatic gin that almost feels like a grown-up take on pink lemonade. The very apparent kick of pepper adds enough complexity to keep us wanting another sip. A bottle that should intrigue both pink gin fans and classic gin drinkers alike.

Manchester Gin raspberry infused

Best: For classic pink gin vibes

Rating: 9/10

  • ABV: 40%
  • Size: 50cl

This is, quite simply, a pink gin as anyone would want it. Well made, and with a discernible pop of fruit from British raspberries, it’s delicious and easy to drink – and yet still dry, balanced and with a distinct juniper character. It’s properly pink, yet still properly gin.

The great taste is probably down to the fact that the distillers don’t mess around, preferring to keep things simple. Owners Seb and Jen take their award-winning signature gin recipe, then infuse it with fresh raspberries before and after distillation to pump up the flavour.

Raspberry has been named as one of the most natural fruit matches for juniper – after all, that’s the combination found in Pinkster, the spirit that started the pink gin craze – and this gin only reaffirms the affinity.

The Gardener small batch rose and honey Scottish pink gin

Best: For garden sipping

Rating: 8/10

  • ABV: 40%
  • Size: 50cl

This pretty gin channels British garden vibes through and through with its plush aromas of rose and honey. One sniff of the glass and we felt like we were in Kew Gardens, sunshine radiating down onto blooms and bumblebees buzzing by lazily.

It could have so easily gone wrong. Both rose and honey are flavours that often smell and taste overwhelming, and even sickly. But thanks to the craft of pro distiller Mark Boswell, of Edinburgh’s Old Curiosity Distillery, this pink gin is perfectly balanced and enticing. It’s surprisingly dry too, and rather smooth to drink neat. We recommend it poured over a giant ice cube.

The Isle of Wight Distillery mermaid pink gin

Best: Drinks trolley brag

Rating: 7.5/10

  • ABV: 38%
  • Size: 70cl

Even if the contents inside weren’t as delicious as they are, we’d be tempted to buy this gin for its stunner of a scaly bottle – the perfect show-off piece for your drinks trolley. But what’s inside is worth taking notice of, too.

It’s made with fresh strawberries – juicy Arreton Valley ones, to be exact – which are steeped in the gin base for a whopping four days before being redistilled. So you get all that forward fruit character without overwhelming jamminess. You also get a proper savoury undercurrent – mermaid’s gin contains 10 unusual botanicals, including grains of paradise (an earthy spice) and rock elderflower. As we said, it’s not just a pretty face.

Chapel Down pinot noir

Best: For wine lovers

Rating: 9/10

  • ABV: 41.2%
  • Size: 70cl

When it comes to smooth sipping, Chapel Down nails it. The English winemaker might be best known for its fizz, but its vodka and gins – all made using fresh wine grapes or skins – are just as worthy of attention.

This pale pink spirit is made with a mix of distilled pinot noir grapes from Chapel Down’s own harvest and English wheat spirit, and has what drink geeks might call ‘gorgeous mouthfeel’ – a long, light and delicate palate. In short, it’s just really nice to drink, with a generous red fruity, floral character that is present without being overpowering.

The bottle, too, is a piece of art, and makes you feel like you’re drinking something special. Brilliant value at a very fair price point.

Tarsier oriental pink gin

Best: Exotic profile

Rating: 7.5/10

  • ABV: 40%
  • Size: 70cl

Bored with the usual berries? Expand your pink gin flavour horizons with this unusual bottling inspired by the plants of Southeast Asia. Red dragon fruit, dried raspberries, galangal and calamansi (a citrus fruit) are distilled with a clutch of traditional gin botanicals, then infused with more raspberry and tropical lychee juice. The result is a smooth-drinking but richly spiced gin that continues to unfold with each sip.

And, if you need one more reason to buy, the company has a conscience, too. It donates 10 per cent of its profits to conservation projects in Southeast Asia, including the Philippine Tarsier Foundation, a non-profit that supports protection of the teeny, goggle-eyed primate that you’ll see emblazoned on the bottle.

L&C raspberry pink gin

Best: For be-ginners

Rating: 8.5/10

  • ABV: 40%
  • Size: 70cl

Raspberry and juniper are a magic combo, and sometimes nothing can beat a well-made berry gin. That’s exactly what you’ll get here – a dry yet richly fruity pink gin that doesn’t shy away from its classic pink profile. We get aromas of red fruit, pink pepper and pink flowers – then tart flavours of ripe red raspberry with every sip.

If it’s your first foray into pink gin drinking (even gin drinking full stop) and you’re looking for something that’s both approachable and quality, L&C Raspberry is a natural place to start.

Hernö pink BTL gin

Best: Non-pink gin

Rating: 8/10

  • ABV: 42%
  • Size: 50cl

If you know this offbeat Swedish distillery, then you’ll know that it marches to a slightly different beat – and its interpretation of a pink gin is no exception. The joke is that it’s the bottle, not the gin, that has the rosy hue. It’s Hernö’s statement against the superficial mass marketing of pink gins, pointing out that we all should care more about flavour than colour (which, of course, is true).

But the reason this non-pink gin made this list is because it does indeed taste pink, thanks to its infusion with classic pink botanicals, strawberry and rose. And yet it is made to appeal to the classic gin lover, too – crisp, dry and with a definite juniper character. After the initial floral-fruitiness, in walks earthy undertones from coriander, cassia and black pepper. It might not look it, but this truly is a pink gin.

Didsbury British bramble

Best: For drinking with friends

Rating: 7/10

  • ABV: 40%
  • Size: 70cl

Pink gin is the fun-times gin, right? It’s made for drinking with friends, for socialising over, for easy-breezy enjoyment. And the great thing about this Bramble gin is that it lets you do just that. It has so much blackberry flavour, even if you get caught in the middle of a hot gossip session and forget to sip, it’s never going to overdilute and lose its punch. Chuck as much ice as you like at it, and even when it’s all melted, you’re still going to taste juicy fruit.

Serve with a sprig of fresh-cut rosemary to add a gorgeous herbal kick to balance that generous berry profile.

Shivering Mountain Peak District pink gin

Best: Quirky British botanicals

Rating: 8.5/10

  • ABV: 40%
  • Size: 70cl

While you don’t always get what you pay for with spirits, this unique bottling does justify its nearly £40 price point. For starters, it’s deliciously smooth to drink – even when we sampled it straight (perhaps it’s the fresh spring water, sourced from just behind the distillery). Secondly, it pushes the boundaries of British pink gin-making by including some quirky botanicals: fruity bilberries and sloe berries, as well as high notes of pink grapefruit and herbal heather and gorse from the Peak District.

This is a pink gin with a locally sourced flair, which is a relative rarity – and we’re into it. Bonus points too for the cool bottle, inspired by Mam Tor (Derbyshire’s ‘Shivering Mountain’). 

Warner’s rhubarb gin

Best: For rhubarb lovers

Rating: 9/10

  • ABV: 40%
  • Size: 70cl

This is the OG of rhubarb gins – created by Harrington brand Warner’s nearly a decade ago. But no wonder it’s still turning it out to major demand – this is a mighty tasty tipple. A full third of every bottle is made with real fresh rhubarb juice, so the profile is natural, full-flavoured and gently sweet.

Needless to say, if you like rhubarb and crumble, you’ll love this gin – especially its slightly tangy finish with hints of cinnamon and black pepper. You could do much worse than pair it with a splash of ginger ale.

Conker spirit port barrel aged gin

Best: For classic gin fans

Rating: 8/10

  • ABV: 43%
  • Size: 70cl

Another fresh take on pink gin, this peachy hued number gets its colour not from fruit but from former Port wine barrels. By resting it in the same vessels that once held the deeply hued fortified wine, the gin gets an enticing peachy colour, lightly sweet red fruit character and a rounded, smooth and full-bodied profile.

Does it taste wine-y? Not really. But big flavour isn’t hugely the point here. Rather it’s the luxurious texture and subtle complexity – something that will intrigue classic gin fans perhaps more than proper pink gin lovers. We’d happily drink this any night of the week – if only it wasn’t quite such an investment at nearly £50 per bottle.

Kyrö pink gin

Best: For pink gin sceptics

Rating: 9/10

  • ABV: 38.2%
  • Size: 50cl

Think pink gin isn’t proper gin? Wait until you try this. Even card-carrying gin geeks will love Kyrö.

First, there’s the colour – more copper than Barbie’s Dream House, particularly as it ages in the bottle. Second, the aroma – distinctly savoury. This is a rye gin infused with rhubarb and berries, and its nose is light-years away from being sickly or overly fruity. Finally, there’s the palate – rich, herbal and round, with a finish that goes on for yonks.

You can pick out notes of liquorice and lingonberry (it’s Finnish, after all), but the overwhelming sensation while drinking this is that someone is filling your mouth with liquid silk. Basically, it tastes expensive – more so than it is.

Salcombe gin rosé sainte Marie

Best: For Gallic vibes

Rating: 9/10

  • ABV: 41.4%
  • Size: 70cl

The pale-pink hue alone is enticing enough – a sophisticated shade that has more in common with an austere Provençal rosé wine than the average pink gin. Just swirling it in our glasses transported us to the sun-drenched Côte d’Azur.

But this south of France-inspired bottling from Devon distiller Salcombe (named after a lighthouse in the old port of Marseille) has more than just good looks. The complex, multi-layered character – whiffs of stone fruit and orange blossom mixed with herbaceous, savoury notes of mint and thyme – continue to unfold in your glass many minutes after pouring.

This is a pink gin that forces you to take it seriously – no wonder it’s picked up so many awards. Sip over a game of boules in the garden and feel Bardot-fabulous.

The verdict: Pink gins

There are a lot of great pink gins out there. But we can’t deny the value for money provided by Malfy Gin rosa, which is why we selected it as our best buy.

If you have a bit more cash to splash, delicious options abound. We love the citrussy profile of Tarquin’s pink lemon, grapefruit & peppercorn gin but also the elegance of Chapel Down pinot noir gin.

And, if you think pink gin’s not for you, give Kyrö pink gin a try – even if you don’t see the world through rose-tinted (gin) glasses, we think you might like this one.

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