Autumn is here! And so is our Gin of the Month! Leaves are falling – with some absolutely stunning colours here in the UK, so I wanted something to bring us out of summer, and make us feel like the colder weather is upon us and embrace the change in season. Enter St Giles Gin.
Wow. Launching in Easter, this husband and wife set-up, Simon and Alison, along with their Master Distiller Pete Margree, have produced something pretty outstanding.
Simon and Alison have been wanting to make a gin for some time, sharing a mutual passion for our favourite juniper spirit. Travelling all over the world, picking up inspiration from everywhere – it was time move their dream to reality. Several months of researching still manufacturers came first – as they wanted to make sure they were getting the best equipment available. They finally placed an order for a beautiful 400 litre German copper still. Custom made, it took 5 months to build and was displayed at an exhibition in London before being installed in Norwich. Standing 4 metres tall and named Anna after their eldest daughter, it is truly both an engineering masterpiece and a thing of beauty.
Now they had the impressive kit, it was time to develop an outstanding gin – after over 100 small batch experimental gins, St Giles was born.
The name was born out of a series of different influences. First, and foremost, it relates to an historic area of Norwich where they own a shop. The plan was to develop a gin shop, showcasing some of the finest gins from around the world. Incidentally, this area of Norwich had links to the distilling industry, with “Distillery Street” running nearby and the Distillers Arms pub (now demolished) not far away. Much of the branding and design have taken inspiration from this area of Norwich. And, of course, there is the link to St Giles, in London, the home of the infamous 18th century gin craze.
St Giles has a distinct nose and flavour profile – with a beautiful peppery heat from the outset and throughout. Some citrus notes are welcome in the middle and of course your traditional gin botanical line up pop up between courses to give you an incredibly balanced taste – but the Grains of Paradise take the lead overall – giving such a warming and enjoyable experience to the whole thing.
So we caught up with Simon and Alison and put our usual questions to them…here’s what they had to say!
“Smooth, light and refreshing”
“Like a fine malt, St. Giles is smooth enough to enjoy on its own over ice and is of course lovely with a splash of tonic and a twist of orange. Double Dutch tonic partners especially well with St. Giles Gin.”
What are the plans for the brand and company over the next 12 months?
“We only launched a few months ago so we have lots of exciting plans for the coming year, some of which we don’t want to divulge at the moment, but we will be attending as many events as we can to spread the word about our lovely product. On the back burner we currently have two other products in the development stage. One of which is a naval strength gin and work so far has yielded a robust flavoursome gin which retains the characteristic St. Giles smoothness and quality.”
We are now off to Australia for the rest of the month so be sure to follow the exciting Gin-Adventure on our Social Media page!