What made you decide to create Mr. Hobbs Gin?
Hobbs of Henley is our family business and will be celebrating its 150 year anniversary soon so we wanted to do something special to celebrate this milestone. Harry Hobbs was the founder of Hobbs of Henley back in 1870. Harry was a bon viveur and an entrepreneur, he was a publican turned boat builder turned boat hirer and he also had a passion for gin! He was often seen drinking his gin at 11am on his punt on the River Thames in Henley. So we thought what better way to celebrate our family business than to put Harry’s spirit in a bottle!
How did you get from the idea to the finished product?
We took our idea firstly to Foxdenton Estate to see if they could make us a wonderful gin with our favoured botanicals. These botanicals were believed to be the ones that Harry used himself to make his own gin! We have added a couple more to give it a modern twist.
Foxdenton Estate in Buckingham are already well established specialists in the making of English Gins so we were thrilled to have their experience to help us make our Mr Hobbs Gin, we then had to find a design team to help us with creating the brand. We were fortunate enough to be introduced to the incredible creative agency Strength and Honour based in Marlow. They gave us the confidence in our concept and ran with it, creating, in our opinion a brand and product to be very proud of.
What is the story behind the name?
Mr Hobbs is a nod to all 5 generations of Mr Hobbs that ran/still run the Hobbs of Henley family boating business. It is also a fairly synonymous name with Henley.
What's the distillery like and can you tell us about the distillation process?
The gin is a distilled gin so the botanicals are only added after the base recipe has been made. We have used a hydrolat of Marshmallow leaves which I believe gives it that unique flavour.
How would you describe your gin in 3 words?
Smooth, citrusy and summery
What makes Mr. Hobbs Gin different?
Our gin is different because it is a gin with a great story and Henley’s first gin! Our gin is a punchy gin at 45% with a citrusy, refreshing finish.
What's your favourite way to drink Mr. Hobbs Gin?
We recommend to serve our gin with plenty of good quality ice, a curl of orange peel and with either Mediterranean Fever Tree tonic or normal Fever Tree tonic.
What are your favourite gins (other than your own of course!)?
We are currently sipping lots of Durham Gin, Salcombe Gin and Cotswolds Gin which are all rather delicious.
What's next, any exciting plans?
We actually have the 150th anniversary of our family boating business, Hobbs of Henley, next year which we are very much looking forward to celebrating. We are already working on a few gin related projects which will launch in conjunction with commemorating the occasion.
Some of our 2019 events we are particularly thrilled to be at this Summer include The Telegraph Gin Experience at The Hurlingham Club, Countryfile Live at Blenheim Palace, and our annual local fixtures including The Royal Regatta and Henley Festival. Lots to look forward to!