Citadelle Gin

AWARDS

“ Time is the best author.
It always writes the perfect ending ”

CHARLES CHAPLIN

The best epilogue is the one that brings all the elements together, giving the story its finishing touch. Citadelle is a story of passion, the same one that makes the world move, a story about commitment and absolute respect for a recipe, aware that ‘one today is worth two tomorrows’. Day by day, minute by minute, drop by drop, is a commitment to time, the right amount of time. The result: a unanimous feeling. Citadelle is the most awarded gin, winner of 69 medals, 32 of which are gold.

Awards speak for us, but the challenge is to remain, with the same commitment, impervious to fashions and trends. Because time doesn’t understand these things.

 

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CITADELLE IS THE MOST
AWARDED GIN,
WINNER OF 69 MEDALS,
32 OF WHICH ARE GOLD.

 

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Grand Master Gin

A Q&A with Alexandre Gabriel
on citadelle gin’s
long road to market

Each June, The Spirit Business, one of the world’s leading spirits media outlets, stages The Gin Masters competition to find and reward the finest gin brands on the world stage. Chaired by The Spirits Business and a panel of leading spirits specialists, the gins are judged in a blind tasting to discover The Gin Masters for that year. Silver, Gold and Master medals are awarded and then the Gold and Master winners are then judged for the overall title of ‘Grand Gin Master’.

Only three Gin Master honors were awarded in 2012 and Citadelle Gin won two! Aged Citadelle Reserve was awarded Gin Master and Citadelle was awarded GRAND GIN MASTER, the highest obtainable award!

“It’s an honor for me, especially to win these awards in England, where gin is so appreciated,” says Alexandre Gabriel, Citadelle Gin creator and proprietor of the Maison Ferrand. In truth, Citadelle Gin really does owe a lot to the English as French gin was very regularly smuggled to England from 1780 to about 1810.

Q: You were making Pierre Ferrand brandy, and quite successfully. What made you try your hand at gin?

AG: Gin is one of my favorite spirits – cool, crisp with the bold flavor of juniper.
Gin has always intrigued me. I’ve always been interested in spirits history and when I unearthed documents about a genever distillery produced in a Citadelle in Dunkirk, France I knew I had found my recipe.

And Citadelle was born. Well, it actually took five years before Citadelle was really born. That’s a long pregnancy!

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Q: Why did it take so long to start producing Citadelle?

AG: Well, the short answer is that no one had ever asked for permission to make gin in pot stills here in our region! I was more trying desperately to convince customs to allow me to produce gin at the distillery where Pierre Ferrand is distilled. You know, by laws we can only distill brandy from November through March and after that our beautiful little pot stills were idle! Since I had done extensive research and learned that historically gin was produced in pot stills over a naked flame. Perfect! That is exactly how our pot stills were designed! But no one in France had ever approached the government with this request. It took me five long years to finally receive the approval to distill gin in our region!

Q: And then when did you launch Citadelle?

AG: We started producing Citadelle in 1995 which really makes us the FIRST artisanal gin producer! We hear about so many lovely artisanal gin distilleries opening now, especially in the US, and I think we were the ones almost 20 years ago that started the movement. But now, when a new artisanal distillery opens they make news. But when I started in 1995, being more producer than marketer, I had to actually FIND a market for our gin! A lot of people thought I was nuts. So after making our first batch of Citadelle, I sent bottles to a few spirits competitions in England and we were lucky enough to win a few really good awards before we even launched.

Q: And has Citadelle won awards since then?

AG: I am very proud of the gin we produce and we have been very fortunate that others feel the same way, especially when those ‘others’ are our customers and fans around the world AND judges in tasting competitions! We have won more than 60 medals to date for Citadelle Gin and for our aged Citadelle Reserve (which we launched in 2008). We hang our awards certificates and medals in the entrance of Chateau de Bonbonnet, our offices in the South-West of France, and we are happy to report that we are running out of wall space! We will have to start using the upstairs hallway now. It makes me smile when I walk through the door and see this, especially for Citadelle Gin. Our goal was to create “what a gin was meant to be” – this is what U.S. spirits writer F. Paul Pacult wrote about us – and I am so pleased to see that we have succeeded. Having won Grand Gin Master for Citadelle in 2012 really makes our goal a reality. I think I’ll go have a gin & tonic right now and make a toast!

Medals

Gold

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
Spirit Journal Rating 2014
Highest Recommendation: 5 stars
2014 / USA

CITADELLE GIN 
Spirit Journal Rating 2014
Highly Recommended (4 stars / 5)
2014 / USA

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
Ultimate Spirits Challenge
Finalist, 94 points
2014 / USA

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
World Spirits Award
Gold Medal – 91/100
2013 / Austria

CITADELLE GIN
IWSC
Gold Medal – Outstanding
2012 / UK

CITADELLE GIN
Beverage Testing Institute
Gold Medal – 91/100
2012 / USA

CITADELLE GIN
Gin Masters
Grand Gin Master 2012
2012 / UK

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
Gin Masters
Master – Gold Medal – 1st place
2012 / UK

CITADELLE GIN
San Francisco Spirits Competition
Double Gold
2012 / USA

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
Guía Peñín De Los Destilados Premium
97 Points
2011 / Spain

CITADELLE GIN
Guía Peñín De Los Destilados Premium
94 Points
2011 / Spain

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
Ultimate Spirits Challenge
Finalist, 92 points
2011 / USA

CITADELLE GIN
San Francisco Spirits Competition
Double Gold
2011 / USA

CITADELLE GIN
Gin Masters
Master in the Super-Premium Category
2010 / UK

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
Internationaler Spirituosen Wettbewerb
Gold Medal
2010 / Allemagne

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
San Francisco Spirits Competition
Gold Medal
2010 / USA

CITADELLE GIN
Ultimate Spirits Challenge
Excellent/Strong Recommendation, 91 points
2010 / USA

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
Ultimate Spirits Challenge
Semifinalist – Excellent/Strong Recommendation, 93 points
2010 / USA

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
Spirits Journal Rating
Highly Recommended
2010 / USA

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
World Spirits Award
Gold Medal
2010 / Autriche

CITADELLE GIN
Internationaler Spirituosen Wettbewerb
Gold Medal
2009 / Allemagne

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
Wine Enthusiast
90-95 points
2009

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
Guía Peñín Sibaritas
92/100 points
2009 / Spain

CITADELLE GIN
Gin Master
Master – Gold Medal – 1st place
2008 / UK

CITADELLE GIN
Erik Mortensen tasting
Nº 1 = 96/100
2008 / Danemark

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
Patterson’s tasting panel
94 points
2008 / USA

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
Spirit Journal Rating 2008
Highly Recommended (4 stars / 5)
2008 / USA

CITADELLE GIN
Guía Peñín
90 points
2007 / Spain

CITADELLE GIN
Wine Enthusiast
Winner – 96 points (Best Gin of the World)
2005

CITADELLE GIN
San Francisco World Spirits Competition
Double gold medal
2004 / USA

CITADELLE GIN
The International Wine & Spirit Competition
Gold Winner 2000
2000 / UK

CITADELLE GIN
Wine Enthusiast
Vainqueur – 96 points
1999

Silver

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
San Francisco World Spirits Competition
Silver Medal
2014 / USA

CITADELLE GIN
The International Spirits Challenge
Silver Medal
2014 / UK

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
IWSC
Silver
2012 / UK

CITADELLE GIN
Ultimate Spirits Challenge
Very good, Strong Recommendation / 88 points
2012 / USA

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
International Wine & Spirit Competition
Silver Medal – 82,3 points
2011 / UK

CITADELLE GIN
The International Spirits Challenge
Silver Medal
2011 / UK

CITADELLE GIN
San Francisco Spirits Competition
Silver Medal
2010 / USA

CITADELLE GIN RÉSERVE
International Wine & Spirit Competition
Silver Medal
2009 / UK

CITADELLE GIN
The Beverage Testing Institute
Silver Medal
2009 / USA

CITADELLE GIN
San Francisco World Spirits Competition
Silver Medal
2009 / USA

CITADELLE GIN
Concours Mondial de Bruxelles
Silver Medal
2007 / Bélgique

CITADELLE GIN
Internationaler Spirituosen Wettbewerb
Silver Medal
2006 / Allemagne

CITADELLE GIN
The Beverage Testing Institute
Silver Medal
2002 / USA

Bronze

CITADELLE GIN
San Francisco World Spirits Competition
Bronze Medal
2007 / USA

CITADELLE GIN
The International Wine & Spirit Competition
Bronze Medal
2002 / UK

CITADELLE GIN
The International Spirits Challenge
Bronze Medal
1999 / UK

CITADELLE GIN
The International Wine & Spirit Competition
Bronze Medal
1999 / UK

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