Pentire Drinks are the brainchild of founder Alistair Frost, who decided to develop his own range of free-from alcohol botanicals inspired by and using coastal plants that are native to his home in North Cornwall. The name Pentire is actually an area of North Cornwall which is where this brand takes its name from.
There are currently two drinks in the Pentire range, the original Adrift and their newer Pentire Seaward. In this Pentire review we shall mainly be focusing on the Adrift flavour which is described as coastal, herbaceous and fresh.
I write this Pentire review literally 1 week after returning from Cornwall – and I think that is a pertinent point – as it seems one of the aims of Pentire is to celebrate the natural bounties associated with the area in which it is created – so read on to find out if they live up to expectation and achieve their aims.
Pentire Drinks – The Pedigree
Expectations were high when I placed my order for a 70cl bottle of Pentire Adrift. Having heard great things about it whilst on my visit to Cornwall and having seen that Gordon Ramsay himself had described Pentire as ‘the most delicious non-alcoholic drink’ it was hard to resist the temptation of placing an order – and so I took myself online and went straight to their website.
It seems that there are gin distilleries everywhere in the UK now and Cornwall is no exception. In fact, the region is home to some of the finest botanists in the UK and the Pentire brand takes full advantage of the local expertise from brewers to botanists to distillers.
Utilising the abundance of wild local produce that is found along the nutrient rich coastland and that is pretty unique to Cornwall thanks to a warmer average climate and high moisture content in the air with its coastal location – the aim of Pentire seems to have been to capture this essence and bottle it – so you can enjoy a guilt free drink that is full of flavour.
The Pentire Ordering Process & Delivery
Considering Pentire is not part of one of the big distilleries, it was refreshing to enjoy such a pain free ordering process. The website is easy to navigate and free shipping is offered on all orders so there are no hidden charges to pay at checkout. Not only that, but so long as you order early enough, you can expect to take delivery the very next day. Delivery is carbon neutral too so you really can drink Pentire completely guilt free.
Being a sucker for a well packaged drink, Pentire leaves nothing to be desired. The bottle itself comes wrapped in some beautiful paper wrapping – so if you wanted to gift this to someone it looks fantastic. Upon unwrapping you will find a perfectly formed round glass bottle with elegant yet simple branding on the label. The bottle will easily stand shoulder to shoulder against premium whisky or gin bottles and will be an aesthetically pleasing addition to any drinks cabinet or shelf.
There is an additional leaflet attached to the bottle that gives tips on how to serve and garnish the drink – another first class touch from Pentire.
Pentire Adrift Taste Test
It is fair to say that although Pentire cannot be classed as a gin, it most closely resembles a drink from the gin family – with a carefully selected range of botanicals being distilled and mixed to create the drink. The ‘Adrift’ bottle is the original and the one that really takes on the coastal tones.
Pentire suggest mixing Adrift with either soda water or a good quality tonic – so I went for both options on my first taste test. Starting with the soda water I went for 50ml of Adrift mixed with about 150ml of soda water and put a stick of rosemary in as a garnish with some ice. Opting for the soda water first was a good choice I think as it allowed me to really taste all the subtleties that Adrift has to offer.
The flavours that are described on the bottle are Rock Samphire, Sage, Pentire Plant Blend, Citrus and Cornish Sea Salt. The Pentire Plant Blend is a bit of an enigma and the sage was hard to pick out but the other flavours were all there. It is hard to describe how this tastes but the taste took me straight back to my 3 week visit to Cornwall – especially the North and South West Coast of the county.
There is something distinctly coastal about Adrift when it comes to flavours. It really is like they have taken the sea air and bottled it. Now that might not sound particularly appetising but believe me it is. This drink is subtle, but the flavours grow and become more distinct with each sip you take.
Following my Adrift with Soda Water, myself and the wife opted to mix it with a Fever-Tree Aromatic tonic water with a wedge of lime. Adrift for me did not hold an overly citrus flavour but it worked well with lime (and I think would taste even better with lemon). I didn’t squeeze any extra lime juice in, and instead just opted for more of a garnish than a full on flavour bomb. The more flavoursome tonic certainly helped Adrift to become more refreshing to drink and offered a good balance – so if that’s your thing then go for a nice light tonic.
As much as I enjoyed the drink with the tonic I couldn’t help but want to go back to the soda water as it really helped me to appreciate the flavours.
Pentire will work brilliantly with a wide range of cocktail inspired flavours too – including a Tom Collins or any gin inspired drink – just be careful not to overdo the flavours and allow the Pentire Adrift to shine through.
At around the same price as a bottle of standard gin, Pentire Adrift is not a cheap alcohol free tipple. But, it more than lives up to its price and packs coastal punch after coast punch when it comes to flavour.
If you want to enjoy a proper grown up drink that is inspired by one of the best regions in the UK, support a company that gives back and wake up hangover free the next morning then I can highly recommend Pentire Adrift.
Next on my to do list… order a bottle of Pentire Seaward.