Juniper (juniperus communis) is quite literally the definition of gin making it incredibly important to distilleries. By law, juniper must be the predominant flavour in anything seeking to be classified as gin. The small dark berries, too bitter to eat, have been used for decades as a spice as well as a folklore medicinal remedy for indigestion. Their unique flavour comprises notes of soft pine, sweet citrus, warm spice and alongside other aromatic qualities.
Juniper is an evergreen shrub and it is thought there are between 50-67 different species, the tallest growing up to 10 metres tall and living hundreds of years. It is incredibly hardy once established, and can thrive in many conditions, and as a result can be found in most countries in the Northern Hemisphere!