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Orkney Distilling

There’s plenty of distilling heritage on the island of Orkney, but the northern Scottish island isn’t only home to Highland Park and Scapa Distillery. Orkney Distilling also makes a delightful range of flavoured gins under the Kirkjuvagr brand. This means ‘Church Bay’ in Old Norse, inspired by a time when Orkney was emerging as a seat of power in the Viking Empire and the Norsemen would sail their longships into Kirkjuvagr, which over the centuries grew into the islands’ capital, Kirkwall. The symbol on the bottle top is a Vegvisir, or Viking compass, which helped the Norsemen find their way into Kirkwall (or Kirkjuvagr) and beyond. Neat, right?

All Kirkjuvagr gin is made in small batches using traditional copper stills. Angelica is a defining ingredient after the brand discovered a local legend that spoke of a variety of Angelica brought to the islands by Norsemen centuries ago, which can still be found growing wild today. It complements a distinctive blend of local botanicals, including ramanas rose, burnet rose, and borage, as well as traditional Orkney bere barley.

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