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Gin and Gems—Bombay Sapphire's Dramatic Decanter

Gregory Mottola
Posted: April 30, 2008

It shone with the glory of God and its brilliance was like that of a very precious jewel. The foundations of the city walls were decorated with every kind of precious stone. The first foundation was jasper, the second sapphire… Revelation 21

And so, like a vision from the apocalyptic Holy City itself comes the Revelation gin decanter, a gemological showpiece that was a collaboration of Bombay Sapphire, Baccarat crystalier and Garrard jewelers. Only five were made, each uniquely forged, fashioned and placed into one of five airport duty-free boutiques—New York, London, Singapore, Dubai and Sydney.


The concept is simple: a world traveler who happens upon one of these decanters in between flights becomes so entranced by the sparkling exhibit that the $200,000 price tag ceases to have any meaning. Sultans and pharaohs aside, it might just entice the average window shopper to walk out with a tax-free liter of Bombay Sapphire gin instead. But this decanter could end up being more than a just a high-priced impulse buy. Consider the artistry and skill required to form what is essentially a 40-pound, 10-faceted gem with a brilliant blue gin vessel blown into the center. It gives the majestic appearance of a suspended sapphire, or a jewel pregnant with another jewel, which of course is the point.


The particular shade of blue happened to be a frustrating infusion for Baccarat. The color had never occurred in Baccarat's palette before, and it took many failed (and costly) prototypes before perfection. In the end, the internal chamber wound up being an almost perfect chromatic rendition of Bombay Sapphire's signature blue hue, elegantly complemented by the sapphire-encrusted stopper care of Garrard, London's oldest gem smithy and Her Majesty's appointed jeweler since 1843.


Should the pragmatist in you choose to actually use this bottle, it holds 375 milliliters of Bombay Sapphire gin, and the company says it will adequately lock in the bouquet of all 10 of the spirit's defining botanicals. With this purchase comes a one-year supply of the London dry gin (amounting to one case per quarter) and the reassurance that it wasn't a completely hedonistic buy, as profits from Revelation will go to Smile Train, a charity that provides cleft surgery for children in need.


To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life… Revelation 21:6

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