We have made the wise decision to enter in to a huge category. Which is intimidating but being ambitious, and having confidence in your product, also offers a great opportunity for notoriety if your product is actually different… and more importantly, good. In a enormous and popular category you inherently have dilution in the quality of products, with some companies looking for a quick way to ride the boom or simply through poor execution of a nice idea. What this does mean is we have an opportunity to be better than the majority by investing some pride in our product and then by being transparent and honest about every aspect of it.
When developing our gin, we had no guidance from anyone with any knowledge of distilling or industry production (partly because we had no access to that resource and partly because we were eager to do things our own way), so our finished product is a genuine interpretation of how we thought a gin should be made… rather than a minor variation, or botanical change, on how all other London dry gins are produced. With this in mind, our botanical ratios & quantities, distillation timings & techniques are all ‘uneducated’ and a product of trial and error. Through our own reading we proudly adhere to the correct criteria for a London dry gin, and have huge respect for those criteria, but our gin has happily/accidentally adopted a very unique character.
Our recipe development was a process of Hollie and I tasting and agreeing what we liked and didn’t like, and discussing how we could achieve what we did like…. Then getting in the shed and having a crack at it. As ‘uneducated’ and small-scale distillers, we naturally adopted a pretty non-scientific approach. Whilst distilling, we are reacting to the taste/smell of the distillate, regulating temperatures and adjusting for extraneous variables. It falls firmly on the ‘romantic’ side of the distilling spectrum – and will remain there.
We took flavour and botanical inspiration from other gins and foods we liked, and have done our research in to production techniques but in reality we didn’t know how those flavours were achieved in liquid form by others. A result of attempting to recreate classic flavours, was that we stumbled upon natural variations that have depth and distinctive taste but remain faithful to juniper-led gins.
We have at all costs avoided the smoke and mirrors of the distillation process. We don’t have a secret warehouse behind our shed housing a commercial distillery and there is certainly no contract distilling here. The stills that feature in our photos are the stills that we produce all of our gin in.
What began as making the most of the resources and space available to us, has ended up defining the production side of our company. We have learnt and embraced an unorthodox ‘Duck and Crutch’ way, whilst respecting the values of a category with transparency and personability.