Elixir Gin is a gin like no other I have tasted. The gin from Berlin relies heavily on woodruff, a generally popular herb in Germany. However, the herb is rarely used in gin. Among the few brands that use woodruff for flavoring, I have yet to find one where the sweet and earthy flavor of the herb is so dominant.
Elixier Gin is best when served on the rocks with fresh lemon. At 40% vol., it is also quite enjoyable when drunk neat at room temperature. The unique combination of woodruff, juniper, and 14 other botanicals leads to a mildly herbaceous Gin with a distinct sweet note.
Elixier Gin Review Summary
- Produced By: CO'PS drinks
- Owned By: CO'PS drinks
- Product Website: to product website
- Production Location: Germany
- Classification: New Western Dry Gin / Contemporary
- Known botanicals: Juniper, woodruff, coriander, fennel, citrus, anise, and nine others
- Aging: No Age Statement (NAS)
- Proof: 40% ABV
- Price: $35 / 500 ml (in Europe)
- Overall Rating: ★ ★ ★ ✬ ☆ (3.5/5)
When opening the bottle, you can immediately smell the subtle, sweet scent of woodruff. The nose is quite earthy and sweet with herbal notes. Overall the aroma is dominated by woodruff, juniper, and citrus fruits. In the background, you can detect hints of fennel, anise, and mint. It is a fresh but not too complex nose.
When you pour it into a glass, you immediately notice the high viscosity of this gin. When swirling it you can see how slowly it moves, almost like oil. Especially interesting because it is filtered six times.
On the palate, the two main components are juniper and a subtle earthy sweetness coming from woodruff. The comparably high amount of sweetness in the gin also explains the oily appearance inside the glass. - The natural and not overpowering woodruff taste is also present when making a Gin and Tonic with this Gin.
Once you add ice, the juniper and woodruff notes are muted. They do not disappear entirely but are dialed down quite a bit.
The flavors of the other botanicals benefit from this, and the overall taste is much more balanced. Anise, fennel, and coriander seeds provide a spicy and earthy flavor.
Add a slice of lemon or lemon peel to the gin and see how well it pairs with the woodruff notes. In combination with the ubiquitous sweetness, this is a delicious way to enjoy the gin. In my opinion, even the best.
How does Elixier Gin perform in some of the most popular Gin Cocktails? Read our opinion here:
Gin and Tonic
I would recommend using Fevertree Indian Tonic Water to go with Elixier Gin. Serve it over a generous amount of ice, garnished with a slice of lemon and a sprig of mint.
The most noteworthy part for me is that the woodruff aroma seems even more intense in a G&T than when drinking the gin neat. Those earthy woodruff notes create an unusual and unique flavor I never had in a Gin and Tonic before.
The freshness of lemon and mint helps to highlight these special notes. Overall, the Gin and Tonic is a bit too sweet for me.
We tried Elixier in a Gin Sour and Gin Fizz and both drinks were excellent. In my opinion, the Gin Fizz was the best cocktail we made with this gin. I served it with a lemon peel twist and a sprig of fresh mint.
The subtle sweetness is not an obstacle but helps to establish the balance between sweet and sour.
The earthy woodruff notes make the cocktail unique and make the classic fizz recipe even better.
I love Negronis, but in this case, it was the most disappointing drink we made with this gin. The cocktail was generally too sweet, and it was almost impossible to create balance since both Campari and vermouth are as well rather sweet ingredients.
The woodruff flavor also doesn't blend well with the bitter notes of the Campari. Even the excellent Antica Formula vermouth from Carpano could not save it.
We also tried Elixier in a hot cocktail called “Heißer Kirmes Apfel.” This one tastes fantastic, and you can easily make it at home. The recipe was developed and tested by the guys from Elixier and is perfect for a cold winter day.
Elixir comes in a special bottle design. The narrow, angular, rectangular, and somewhat whimsical bottle holds a total of 500ml. The old-school design of the label is entirely in black and white, reminiscent of the fairs and circuses of the 1920s. The bottle is closed with a natural cork which further enhances the vintage impression.
Although a bottle contains only half a liter of gin, it feels larger in the hand. This is mainly due to the unusual shape and the glass thickness which is therefore required.
The list of botanicals is long. In total, Elixier Gin contains 15 different botanicals that create a round and fresh flavor that is dominated by juniper and woodruff.
The 13 remaining botanicals include fennel, coriander seeds, citrus fruits, and anise. This mix complements the woodruff and juniper flavors well and creates a distinct sweet and herbal flavor profile.
Most of these botanicals are commonly known, but some of you may never have heard of woodruff before - at least if you have not grown up in Germany. There, woodruff-flavored drinks and sweets are actually pretty popular.
When I first heard about Elixier, I was instantly intrigued. A gin based on woodruff certainly is something special. And because so many people don't even know this herb exists, I will give more detail on what woodruff actually is.
Woodruff – also known as “Master of the woods” (in German: Waldmeister) – has a sweet and earthy aroma, almost hay-like. Some also compare it to freshly mowed grass. The flavor is so intense that you might think it is artificial. - But it is not.
There are many medical use cases for woodruff: it is beneficial for strengthening your heart and helps with headaches, migraines, abdominal cramps, kidney stones, and even liver diseases.
Germans have a long tradition of woodruff-flavored drinks – alcoholic and non-alcoholic. You can get woodruff-flavored lemonade, ice pops, sweets, and beer.
About the brand
The Elixier Gin brand currently sells four different products. Besides the classic woodruff-flavored gin they also produce quince gin, Sloe Gin, and winter gin.
An homage to childhood memories. This introduction phrase from the brand sets the tone. This gin is fun. Its packaging is unique, and so is the taste.
Due to it being sweet and quite unusual, I would classify it as a New Western Dry Gin. This type of gin pushes the limits and implements new and unique ideas.
Elixir gin is a welcome change from classic London Dry Gins. The woodruff notes make this contemporary gin something truly special. The somewhat overly dominant sweetness and the resulting incompatibility in some classic gin cocktails prevent a higher rating.
The best way to enjoy this gin is on ice, garnished with lemon peel or a slice of lemon.