What did you do before setting up The Edge Distillery?
Mike and I have been fortunate in our lives to have been able to have travelled the world extensively for 18 years due to working on cruise ships as entertainers. But after so long at sea we wanted to unpack our suitcases and come back to land life and throw ourselves into a new challenge. While away at sea we were quite oblivious to the gin boom that the UK was experiencing and we very quickly realised after so many years at sea we were not particularly qualified to do much job wise. Because we already loved gin and became fascinated with the process of how it was made we eventually decided this would be our next chapter in life.
What's the inspiration behind your gin and the brand?
We are from Alderley Edge and we fell in love with the local legend of The Wizard of Alderley Edge. He was thought to have been Merlin and his image is carved on a rock face above a well in the National Trust forest called The Edge. Under the carving is an inscription that reads "Drink of this and take thy fill, for the water falls by the wizards will". We have the wizards face on the front of our bottle and we've added the inscription although we swapped the water for Gin... Pretty sure the Wizard would have enjoyed a G&T.
Can you tell us more about the distillery and distillation process?
When we began in 2018 we worked out of an industrial unit and we were closed to the public. We have just moved, fully renovated and opened our brand new distillery along with a bar and shop and we are now open to the public at the lovely Alcumlow Hall farm in Astbury.
We now gone from having two stills to having four column head stills - Merlin, Arthur, Lancelot and Guinevere. We use a distillation process known as vapour infusion. We pre-soak any fruit, zest or certain botanicals in NGS for 24 hours before we start. We use a lovely mix of botanicals from dried citrus peels to star anise, cinnamon and nutmeg along with the classic botanicals always used. Our signature botanical is Wolfberry aka Goji Berry. We don't add sugar or sweeteners to our Gins so the Berries add their own delicate sweetness.
What can visitors expect and experience if they visit the distillery for a tour/tasting?
We are now running distillery tours and tastings on Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings. We are offering a charming evening involving 3 large G&Ts throughout the night along with neat tastings of all our gins. You'll get a behind the scenes look at our distillery while hearing our story along with our gin making process. We'll have a Q&A session along with a fun Gin Quiz, there will be nibbles, music and 15% off Edge items in our shop. - Book a Tour / Tasting
What has been the biggest challenges and achievements so far?
We are extremely proud of going from being entertainers to completely changing careers and jumping head first in to the world of Gin. We've honestly never worked harder in our lives as we do now, but that graft has been important because it has lead us to opening our own beautiful distillery bar and shop. Our biggest challenge has definitely been fully renovating our new distillery and in a fool hardy manner and taking on every job ourselves. It's literally taken blood, sweat and tears... And possibly aged us slightly because of all the stress! But it's how Mike and I work... We always try our hardest to do the very best we can.
How would you describe The Edge Gin in 3 words?
Clean, Smooth, Moreish.
What's your favourite way to drink your gins?
Preferably on a beach on a hot sunny day!
We love our London dry Gin with Fevertree Mediterranean Tonic and Grapefruit garnish. Our L'orange Gin lends itself to Fevertree Light tonic with a orange garnish. Our Pear Gin with Fevertree light tonic and a slice of Pear. And our Fruits of the forest Gin with Fevertree Indian tonic, Sliced Lemon and Strawberries.
Which other gins do you always like to have on your shelves?
We've never met a gin we didn't enjoy in all honesty and we have lots of fellow gin makers that make absolute stunning creations. Our shelves change constantly but currently we have Chase Pink Grapefruit and Pomelo Gin, and the Navy strength Gin from our distillery friends at Defiance Gin.
What's next for The Edge - any exciting plans?
Now our new distillery is open we are diving straight into our Gin Tasting / Tour evenings. Next year our next gin release will be our Navy Strength which we are very excited about!
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