5 Delicious Shiraz Gin Cocktails

Threefold Shiraz Gin

What is Shiraz Gin?

Shiraz gin is a fruit flavoured gin. The most common way to produce it is by macerating shiraz grapes in gin. By steeping grapes in gin it extracts the flavour, tannins, and the intensely coloured juice of the fruit.

The team from Four Pillars distillery in the Yarra Valley were the first to experiment with this style of gin in 2015, making their first batch of Bloody Shiraz Gin. They macerated shiraz grapes in high-proof gin for 8 weeks before pressing the grapes, and diluting with more gin.

This experiment by Four Pillars inspired a whole new category of fruit flavoured gins highlighting red wine grapes. Whilst shiraz is the most common grape varietal used, small Australian distilleries have experimented by using other grape varietals such as grenache, sangiovese, montepulciano, etc.

Shiraz Grape Vines

Shiraz gin can be made with other methods such as distilling the grape juice, or aging gin in ex-Shiraz barrels, although macerating the grapes is the most common method and it produces a sweeter, brighter shiraz gin.

Shiraz gin has become a uniquely Australian style of gin. Some see it as Australia’s own take on the English “sloe gin” category. Although sloe berries are astringent and need the addition of sugar to make them palatable. Shiraz gin inherits its natural sweetness from the ripened grapes.

What Shiraz Gin Cocktails Should I Make?

Emily in Paris Cocktail

Pictured: Emily in Paris cocktail by Threefold Distilling

Shiraz Gin Sour

  1. Dry shake. Wet shake. Strain into a coupe.
  2. Garnish with a dehydrated orange wheel.

Shiraz Espresso Martini

  • 30 ml Threefold Shiraz Gin
  • 15 ml aged rum (such as Flor De Cana 7yo)
  • 15 ml Mr Black coffee liqueur 
  • 45 ml cold brew concentrate
  • 10 ml simple syrup
  1. Shake with ice. Strain into a coupe.
  2. Garnish with 3 delicately placed coffee beans.

Shiraz Gin Negroni

  • 40 ml Threefold Shiraz Gin
  • 20 ml Ruby Bitter (by Imperial Measures Distilling), or Campari
  • 20 ml sweet vermouth
  1. Stir with ice. Strain over ice into an old fashioned glass.
  2. Garnish with a slice of orange.

Shiraz Gin Coffee Negroni

  • 20 ml Threefold Shiraz Gin
  • 20 ml Campari
  • 20 ml Mr Black coffee liqueur
  • 20 ml sweet vermouth
  1. Stir with ice. Strain over ice into an old fashioned glass.
  2. Garnish with a slice of orange

Emily in Paris (Shiraz Gin Spritz)

  • 50 ml Threefold Shiraz Gin
  • 15 ml Threefold Australian Lemoncello
  • 5 ml Chinola (passion fruit liqueur)
  • 30 ml sparkling wine
  • 10 ml simple syrup
  • 10 ml lemon juice
  • Soda, to top
  • Mint sprig
  1. Shake with ice. Strain into a coupe.
  2. Garnish with half a passion fruit, floated.

What are the Best Shiraz Gin Mixers?

A shiraz gin is often sweeter than a traditional style London dry gin. This needs to be taken into account when making a mixed drink, or cocktail. Whilst it still makes an exceptional gin and tonic, it is a touch on the sweeter side. Here are some great alternatives that you should try:

Shiraz gin and…

  1. Ginger beer
  2. Ginger ale
  3. Lemon squash
  4. Bitter lemon
  5. Soda water
  6. Lemon tonic
  7. Mediterranean tonic

What Does Shiraz Gin Taste Like?

Shiraz gin boasts dark fruit and berries on the nose, and can showcase notes of juicy red grapes, lush plums, stewed currants, warming spices, dark chocolate, mulberries, burnt orange, sweet spice, and jammy characters. These flavours depend on the chosen fruit and the production methods used.

Is Shiraz Gin Sweet?

Shiraz gin is typically sweeter when compared to a London dry gin. This is due to the natural sugars that are extracted from the grapes during maceration and pressing. How sweet the gin is depends on the sugar content of the grapes, how long the grapes are macerated for, and if the grapes are pressed after maceration to extract the sweet juice. A shiraz gin can be made more dry by adding more gin, but doing so will also dilute the fllavour.

Because the gin tends to be sweeter than a London dry gin, try making drinks with mixers that have less sugar such as soda water, or one of our favourites - ginger beer or ginger ale. The ginger flavour compliments the spice notes in shiraz gins and, depending on the mixer chosen, will keep the drink dry rather than making it sweeter. Fever-Tree Ginger Beer is a great mixer to pair with shiraz gin, which has 25% less sugar than some other brands.

Does Shiraz Gin Go Off?

Shiraz gin is essentially a type of mistelle, which is fortified fresh grape juice. Because shiraz gin is most commonly made with fresh grape juice it is open to oxidisation. Often the oxygen is removed from a bottle at the time of bottling so an unopened bottle will keep indefinitely, but the colour and flavours may evovle over time.

A recent vintage shiraz gin will retain more of the bright, sweet, fruity characters. If this is what you would like to taste then it’s best to enjoy it within 6 months of opening and it’s a good idea to store it in the fridge once opened.

If the bottle is left unopened, the bright purple colours will slowly fade, sediment will form at the bottom of the bottle, and the gin will develop more fortified / aged wine characters.

What is the Strength of Shiraz Gin?

The alcohol content of a shiraz gin varies depending on the producer and vintage, but they typically sit around 37-38% abv (alcohol by volume). Here are some examples from Australian shiraz gin producers:

  • Threefold Shiraz Gin = 37.5%
  • Four Pillars Bloody Shiraz = 37.8%
  • Australian Distilling Co Shiraz Gin = 38.5%
  • Seppeltsfield Rd Distillers Barossa Shiraz Gin = 38.5%
  • Heathcote Shiraz Gin = 37%
  • Prohibition Liquor Co Field Blend Shiraz Gin = 38%
  • Barossa Distilling Co Barossa Shiraz Gin = 38%
  • Tempus Two Copper Shiraz Gin = 40%

How is Threefold Shiraz Gin Made?

Shiraz gins are often made by macerating the fresh grapes in spirit for weeks or months. We decided to do things a little differently and macerate for a shorter period at a higher abv. We did this to reduce the tannins extracted from the grape skins.

We source shiraz grapes from the Adelaide Hills and mourvèdre grapes from McLaren Vale. Each variety brings their own unique characters to our blended shiraz gin. The two grape varietals are macerated in separate batches. The grapes are macerated for several days at still strength which, for us, is around 84%. This high abv gin distillate pulls colour and flavour from the grapes incredibly quickly.

The grapes are then pressed and the free-run juice is added to the gin bringing it from 84% down to bottling strength at 37.5%. No water or additional gin is added as we feel that this dilutes the flavour imparted by the grapes, but this is commonly undertaken to increase yields. The choice of fruit and our in-house production methods produce a luscious shiraz gin with notes of dark chocolate, warm spice, stewed currant and juicy plums.

It’s sweet, jammy, and delicious!

    What people have to say about Threefold Shiraz Gin:

    "I recently tasted Threefold Shiraz Gin and was blown away by it. Its smooth rounded flavour is exquisite. I've now ordered some more to restock. Do yourselves a favour and taste it, you won't regret it."
    ⭐  Leslie Ann Dunbar
    "I’m a big fan of Threefold Shiraz Gin and this is at the top of my list - on ice it’s a beauty!"
     S.N
    "I first tried it as a 'sour' cocktail and it was delicious. It's very deep, rich and bold. Similar to last year's GSM but even better if that's at all possible!"
     Terri Smallbon

    Order a bottle of Shiraz Gin.

    Buy Shiraz Gin

    Which is the Best Shiraz Gin in the World?

    Several Australian distilleries have taken out top awards at international spirits competitions for their shiraz gins, including:

    • Barossa Distilling Company Barossa Shiraz Gin - Best Flavoured Gin at the 2024 World Gin Awards
    • Tempus Two Copper Shiraz Gin - Double Gold at the 2023 San Francisco World Spirits Competition, Double Gold at the 2023 Singapore World Spirits Competition, and Double Gold at the 2023 New York World Wine & Spirits Competition
    • Four Pillars Bloody Shiraz - Best in Category at the 2022 ADI International Spirits Competition
    • Seppeltsfield Rd Distillers Barossa Shiraz Gin - Outstanding-Gold Medal with 99 points at the 2022 International Wine and Spirits Competition

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