Drink This Now: GrandTen Distilling Wire Works Rosé Gin
The new summer spirit highlights citrusy flavors with a fruity hue from City Winery-sourced grapes.
World Gin Day and National Rosé Day converge this year on Saturday, June 9—and the most responsible way to celebrate might be to combine your efforts. What good fortune, then, that South Boston distillery GrandTen has just released a pretty pink iteration of its delicious Wire Works Gin.
Late last summer, the rosé-all-day trend was in full swing when GrandTen founder and president Matt Nuernberger started thinking about combining the pink wine-making process with his go-to summer spirit. Other rosé gins, tequila, and even whiskey have since hit the market, but Nuernberger hasn’t tried any others, he says.
“A lot of other people had similar ideas” as GrandTen, Nuernberger says. Pink gin “really feels like a summery kind of thing. It’s super tasty, and very gorgeous.”
After some experimentation, GrandTen settled on a recipe for the rosé gin’s base that highlights sweeter, citrusy flavors thanks to new ingredients like lemon and orange peel, over the earthy spice of the Wire Works original blend. Nuernberger’s team sourced Carménère grape pulp and skins from City Winery Boston, leftover from its winemaking efforts. After distillation, the gin rested on the grapes in stainless steel for less than a week to get the distinct color and subtle fruit flavor.
“It’s really good as a gin and tonic. It’s very refreshing,” Nuernberger says.
GrandTen Bar manager Steve Schnelwar has also worked it into a few summery cocktails on his menu. Try it up in a drink called Annette’s Bikini, with lime, GrandTen Craneberry Liqueur, and house-made orgeat; or in Strawberry Letter No. 23, which adds a house-made strawberry shrub, Grand Elder (a house-made elderflower liqueur), and bitters. He plans to have some additional drink specials available in the bar on Saturday to celebrate World Gin Day, Nuernberger adds.
Wire Works Rosé is so far available at Allston’s Hopewell Bar & Kitchen, and at Toro, which just revamped its cocktail menu with a new section dedicated to the Spanish passion for the gin and tonic. The 90-proof spirit is also for sale at GrandTen’s retail accounts for a suggested $32.
The plan for now is to keep producing Wire Works Rosé until fall sets in—the team was filtering a second batch this morning, Nuernberger says—and hopefully bring it back next spring.
It’s not the only pink drink on local shelves this season—cidermakers throughout the northeast are on board with the trend.
If you’re looking to fill your bar with the full gamut of locally produced, warm-weather gins, Bully Boy Distillers celebrates its new gin tonight, and Short Path Distillery recently came out with this year’s Summer Gin soaked in wild Maine blueberries.
GrandTen Distilling, 383 Dorchester Ave., Boston; 617-269-0497, grandten.com.