AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND – Intriguing, bewitching, beguiling and utterly delicious, Scapegrace Black is the world’s first naturally black gin, a viral sensation that swept New Zealand and sold out in just one day. Today, Scapegrace Black is now available in the United States at a suggested retail price of $39.99.
The New Zealand-based Scapegrace Distillery was founded by brothers-in-law Mark Neal and Daniel McLaughlan in 2014. Scapegrace Gin was created with the mission to not just break the rules, but to create their own, enabling them to create a product so special that won them “World’s Best London Dry Gin” at the International Wine & Spirits Competition in London in 2018 for its Gold Gin. The award-winning, boundary-pushing brand was created with the mission to break all the rules but one: every great gin starts with great botanicals. After years of trial and error with different botanicals and distillation techniques, Scapegrace has created Scapegrace Black, a black gin that changes color.
Scapegrace Black begins, like all quality gins, with intense juniper and the addition of premium, exotic botanicals. Master distiller Anthony Lawry, one of New Zealand’s first single malt whisky distillers, uses a combination of local sweet potato, aronia berries, pineapple and saffron, as well as butterfly pea flower sourced from Southeast Asia, to create a flavor profile that has wowed bartenders and gin fans worldwide.
“It has never been part of the brand ethos to follow what other distillers were doing,” says co-founder Mark Neal. “We decided that if we were going to make a flavored gin, we were going to do it our own way. By experimenting with different botanicals, we discovered we could make a naturally black liquid with very particular botanicals and distinct flavors. It took us about a year to bring this liquid to life.”
To make a great gin is a difficult task. To craft one that is naturally black – which technically is the absence of color – but with the emotion of big, botanical-forward flavor, takes skill and technique only a few can achieve. The temperatures must be absolutely precise, and the sequences have to be very specifically defined.
Butterfly pea flower, in its natural state, has electric blue petals. Steeped, the petals produce a rich, intensely flavorful tea, with that same neon coloring, and gorgeous, soft earthy, citrus notes. Using exact temperatures and timing with their botanicals, Scapegrace has created a truly spectacular gin with a vibrant flavor and beautiful, midnight hue.
The result is Scapegrace Black, a gin with an exciting nose of pineapple and lemon, followed by spicy juniper. The flavor profile of Scapegrace Black is unique, marrying a gin-drinker’s love of juniper with something dark, delightfully devious and beautifully unexpected. The sip is full-bodied on the palate, with unctuous pepper and oil, a hint of mint and dreamy undertones of starch mingling with tropical fruits. The finish offers visions of freshly mowed grass, sweet earth and herbs. Visually stunning when mixed with tonic and/or citrus, Scapegrace Black goes from noir to a light lavender.
“Scapegrace’s color change from black to purple occurs thanks to that butterfly pea flower in our botanical lineup,” added Lawry. “The petals of this flower contain a pigment called anthocyanin, which causes the color to shift when introduced to acidity like citrus. If you were to place lemon juice in a glass of butterfly pea flower tea, it would morph from deep blue to purple, finally to electric pink. In our case, it goes from jet black to lavender.”
From this small blue flower, a handful of other delicious botanicals, years of hard work, exacting science, the incredible distilling landscape of New Zealand and most importantly a sense of adventure, comes Scapegrace Black, an enchantress in a glass.
Scapegrace Gin is imported from New Zealand and distributed nationally in the U.S. by 375 Park Avenue Spirits, a division of the Sazerac Company. Scapegrace Black presents at a 41.6% ABV and is available at retailers nationwide and online at a suggested retail price of $39.99 (750ml). It joins the Scapegrace U.S. portfolio alongside Scapegrace Classic Dry Gin (42.2% ABV; SRP: $29.99/750ml) and Scapegrace Gold Dry Gin (57% ABV; SRP: $59.99/750ml).
Scapegrace is a distillery based in New Zealand founded by brothers-in-law Mark Neal and Daniel McLaughlin. All of Scapegrace’s products start with unparalleled botanicals and water torn from the earth 80 years after it came down New Zealand’s Southern Alps. Everything from the brand’s ingredients to the processes used, and even the bottles they come in pays tribute to the traditional craft of gin making, while also allowing the founders to forge their own path and pave a new way for the process. Scapegrace’s American portfolio features three gins, including the world’s first naturally black, color changing gin, Scapegrace Black. For more information visit ScapegraceDistillery.com or follow along on social media @scapegrace.
ABOUT 375 PARK AVENUE SPIRITS
375 Park Avenue Spirits specializes in the premium-to-luxury-spirit categories and our portfolio includes numerous expressions from leading international producers. Founded as Luctor International, LLC in 1981, 375 Park Avenue Spirits joined the Sazerac Company in early 2015 to act as an independent, yet fully integrated sales and marketing affiliate. The company is known today for creating an environment of growth for supplier partners in the domestic market for renown brands like Van Gogh Vodka from Holland, Sobieski Vodka from Poland, Cutty Sark Blended Scotch, J.P. Wiser’s Canadian Whisky, Paul John Single Malt Whisky from India, Scapegrace Gin from New Zealand, Novo Fogo Cachaça and many others. For more information on 375 Park Avenue Spirits, please visit 375park.com.
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