Hamburg-Zanzibar Tumeric Raw Gin

The Facts

  • Origin: Hamburg, Germany (or Zanzibar?)
  • Type: London Dry Gin
  • ABV: 45 %
  • Bottling: 500 ml
Hamburg-Zanzibar Tumeric Raw Gin
HH-Zanzibar Tumeric Raw Gin

Inspired by Zanzibar-travels, Hauke, the maker of this gin, brought so life something that really proofs how “London Dry” is just a production method, not a discription of a certain taste.

The Hamburg-Zanzibar Tumeric Raw Gin is produced the London Dry way: all botanicals are distilled together. However, if you expect a juniper forward gin, Hauke explains, you will be very surprised. This could be one of the most unsusual London Dry Gins out there…

Well, let’s give it a try then!


  • Wow! There is A. LOT. OF. SPICE. in my nose right upon sniffing this bottle for the first time!
  • Herbal, earthy, and – sorry for the early repetition – lots of spicy aromas arise to my nose. I’m not a chef and certainly not an expert in cooking Oriental meals, either, but it would seem to me that this is the tumeric here, isn’t it? πŸ˜‰
  • Jokes aside, I also get some piney juniper and some slight citrus aromas, as well. Both are very much on the spicy side, again, and rather held in the back, I would say

Neat Sip

  • Now that is something different!
  • The Tumeric Raw Gin comes with an almost provocative amount of spicy peppers and – now I can tell – tumeric, however it doesn’t burn your mouth at all (despite a good 45 % ABV)
  • The second layer reveals some super interesting and kind of oily citrus notes. Oily is also the mouth feel which is left after a neat sip of this extraordinary gin. It’s almost a parfume-like feeling, I woul say (and I mean this in no negative way at all!)
  • Also, the tumeric taste evolves from spicy and peppery to almost sweet, later on. Something I would have never expected, to be honest.

Adding Ice

  • Oh it gets much “softer” now that some dilution and a drop of temperature have taken place. I know that “soft” is not a description, so let me explain:
  • The very strong pepper notes become a bit milder, the oily mouth feel remains but it is even more pleasant, I must say. It’s more like a silky feeling, now
  • Juniper and citrus tastes remain in the background, but it seems a bit more balanced and not as much on the pepper-explosive side anymore. I like this a lot!
  • Careful: don’t let if over-dilute as too much water will underwhelm this gin’s signature tastes to a considerable amount! You don’t want this, it would be a shame πŸ˜‰

… And Tonic

  • First up: Fever-Tree Indian Tonic
    • This works, first and foremost
    • However I feel like the level of sweetness is somehow undermining the gin’s signature notes to an extend that I think is too much
    • Juniper actually comes out a bit more here, but the pepper and tumeric fall too short compared to what they have been in the neat sip
  • Second: Fever-Tree Mediterranean
    • Much better!
    • We want something out of the usual here, and this is giving us pretty much just that – a herbal and spicy G&T
    • The citrus notes aren’t entirely lost in this one, either.
  • Alternative: Fever-Tree Premium Dry
    • I would have guessed that a dry tonic water suites the Tumeric Raw Gin best…
    • … but this one wasn’t quite the one. It’s good on the one hand, as it leaves enough room for the gin’s own taste. But it’s not perfect as it brings quite some citrus/acid notes to the mix, which don’t fully harmonise, as far as I am concerned
  • I think another fun experiment could be the mix with a citrus-forward tonic such as Fentiman’s Tonic or even a Goldberg Yuzu Tonic (I have neither at hand right now so I’ll have to leave this for a different occasion)

Summary and Overall Impression

  • A few years ago, when I still described myself as a “juniper forward-only gin guy”, I would have largely neglected such a gin gin. I’m being very honest with you
  • Today, however, after tasting a bunch of gins and seeing so much “similar” stuff out there, it pleases many of my senses to see something this different and out of the usual: a gin that doesn’t try to be the next best juniper-forward gin, alongside 2,342,512 others (rough estimate)
  • Two things influence this gin very much, both of which – and this is the best part – really stand for the makers: botanical finesse and the desire to travel to different worlds. This gin is complex, different and certainly from a different (botanical) world than what we normally know
  • The Tumeric Raw Gin may not be the standard “crowd pleaser”, but that wasn’t the intention behind it, either. It’s really something for us gin nerds, the fans that want to experience something beyond the “usual”. And it very much brings just that to us – chapeau!
  • Some of the botanicals are:
    • Red peppercorn
    • Tumeric
    • Pine needles
    • Almonds
    • Rosemary

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