The Botanist.

Wild. Foraged. Distilled.

Foraged Island Botanicals
The first and only Islay dry gin


Academy Corpse Reviver

By Jane Carswell

26th July 2017

This is a cocktail based on a recipe from Michael at Great British Vermouth, with a little improvisation required if you have no absinthe sitting in the cupboard, which we did not. [see below or this article about how to make DIY absinthe] Heather from our Laddieshop team created it for yesterday's Botanist Gin Tour.

25ml Gin

25ml Vermouth

25ml Cointreau

25ml Lemon juice

dash Absinthe 

Rinse out a martini glass (preferably chilled) with absinthe. Shake the other ingredients with ice in a cocktail shaker and strain into the glass. Garnish with a small tansy leaf. 

Foraging Notes

Foraged scratch absinthe: At the distillery we are lucky to have new spirit running off the stills at about 68% proof. Plus, we have a garden at our 'Academy House' in which we grow mugwort, various other botanicals, and interesting weeds. Mugwort - Artemesia Vulgaris - is a close relation of Wormwood - Artemesia Absintha - which is the decisive ingredient in both vermouth and absinthe. Like mugwort, it is an aromatic bitter herb containing the chemical compound thujone which gives you trippy dreams. (Wormwood is more pungent and bitter, I'd say, Mugwort more delicious.) And mugwort is one of the the 22 botanicals that can be picked wild around Islay and is in our gin. Tansy and yarrow are also in The Botanist and both contain thujone.

The other key compound you're looking for in absinthe is anethole, which makes the liquorice / aniseed flavour, and is responsible for the colour-changing cloudiness of the louche effect. [See video about the louche effect here >] You can find that aniseed flavour in the wild from Sweet Cicely, which is a member of the carrot family. At the Academy House, there's a big bronze fennel bush - also carrot family - which provided flowers, stem and leaves for the cause. 

The other plants I used to fill out the two dominant flavours were lemonbalm, calming tree mallow leaf, forget-me-not (which is borage family - tastes like cucumber or lettuce with a tiny spike of spice up front) and pineapple weed, which were poking their heads up through the gravel.

Read the full account of the DIY absinthe-making process here >

More about the plant families in The Botanist gin here >

collected plants for home-made absinthe

freshly collected plants for homemade absinthe



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