What did you do before creating your distillery and Green Room Gin?
We both come from the world of entertainment; Seb is a Sound Designer, and Duncan is a Video & Projection Designer.
What made you decide to create your distillery and gin?
When the entertainment industry came crashing down in March 2020, we suddenly found ourselves with a lot of time on our hands. We acquired the distilling equipment three years prior, and when lockdown hit, about 2 weeks in we decided it was time to fire up the stills. What started as a hobby in the kitchen, transferred to Duncan’s design studio, where the servers and cabling were replaced with the stills and piping.
What is the inspiration behind your gin?
Our objective from the very start was to create a premium small batch, London dry style gin, and a smooth, flavoursome vodka that we wanted to drink - both bold and full of flavour that wouldn’t be masked by a mixer, only complimented.
Can you tell us more about the distillery and your stills?
The distillery is very small, situated in what used to be a design studio, so it has been quite a process adapting it. We have two stills - a 100L Copper Pot Still that produces our eight multiple award-winning gins. All of our gins both combine botanicals in the compound and in the infusion basket directly above. We also have a 25L Column Still that produces our sustainable Revival Vodka by re-distilling our gin's heads and tails three times, before filtering it through charcoal three times.
Can you tell us more about the botanicals you use?
We use 14 botanicals in our gin, including a lot of fresh fruit - namely Orange, Pink Grapefruit and Lime. We soak the pulp in the compound alongside our dried botanicals, and then utilise the peel in the infusion basket to gain the lighter notes. Some of the other botanicals we use are Cinnamon, Cloves, Grains of Paradise and Liquorice to give a warming finish.
What have been the biggest challenges so far?
It’s been a huge learning curve switching industries, and starting a new business hasn’t been easy, especially at a time when the hospitality sector has also been struggling. We are still in the process of finding a stable distribution process, but are slowly getting there.
What have been the biggest achievements so far?
All of our gins have won multiple awards, with the top achievements being our original Theatre Dry Gin being a Winner in The Gin Guide Awards 2022, two stars in the Great Taste Awards for our Flyman’s Strength Gin and Trinity Autumn Gin, plus one star for our Sloe Gin and Revival Vodka… and to top it off, our Sloe Gin also won Gold at the IWSC.
We’re very proud to have partnered with Clapham based Michelin-stared restaurant Trinity and Head Chef Adam Byatt to create their Trinity English Garden Gin range. There is a bottle for each season, Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter, with the Winter edition being the world’s first and only London Peated Dry Gin. We combined Peat from Islay, Christmas Tree, Dried Slices of Clementine, Fresh Heather and Pine Cones to create a gin that is like nothing else.
One of our proudest moments though was partnering with Backup, the technical entertainment charity - they support people who work behind-the-scenes and have fallen on hard times, and now more than ever, it’s never been more prevalent! We donate £1 from every bottle of gin, vodka and sloe gin sold.
How would you describe your gin/s in 3 words?
Bold, unique and fresh.
What's your favourite way to drink your gin?
We recommend drinking our gin with a light/diet tonic, such as Double Dutch or Fever Tree, garnishing with a wedge of fresh Orange or Pink Grapefruit. We try to steer people away from flavoured or full fat tonics, as they only mask the flavour profile of our gin, often making it far too sweet.
Which gins would you always have on your gin shelf (other than your own of course!)?
I can’t live without either The Botanist Gin from Islay, or Harahorn Gin from Norway.
What's next for you and Green Room Distillery - any exciting plans?
We’re currently preparing our 2023 batch of Sloe Gin which is currently available for pre-order and we aim to dispatch it the first week of December. In addition to that, we will be moving into a new premises with a boutique gin bar and gin school, and upgrading to a new 200L still, which will coincide with a re-brand and bespoke bottle design.
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