Finding out that a gin distillery has opened not too far from where you live is every gin lover’s dream. When my gin buddy told me about Griffiths Brothers Distillery in Penn I had to pinch myself, the dream was a reality! Unfortunately due to a rather hectic social calendar, I missed their introductory gin evening at Malt the Brewery in Prestwood, but was assured that they would be hosting another gin event soon.
A couple of months later messages began flying on our gin chat group… Gin Tales at Malt the Brewery on 31st August…YES!!! Just the right kind of treat for the last week of the summer holidays. Sadly this gin fuelled excitement was short lived as Hubby reminded me that he had a super duper London based surprise evening booked for us. Which was indeed fabulous. But what to do about Gin Tales, I had it all planned out in my blogging schedule…
“It’s ok, we can guest blog for you!”
…offered my fellow gin lovelies. So here we go, Gin Tales – Griffiths Brothers Gin according to two of my gorgeous Gin Friends!
Gin Tales was billed as an opportunity to listen to the Griffiths brothers talk about gin and why they started making their own as well as watching – and tasting 3 signature drinks with their award winning cold-distilled gin. Honestly, this sounded like the perfect evening for 3 Gin Friends – as well as a few lucky invitees; unfortunately calamity struck when Gin Obsessions Hubby booked a surprise on the same night! There may have been tears and a tiny tantrum, but the 2 remaining Gin Friends stepped in and agreed to be Guest Bloggers for the event!
We first met Alex and Drew Griffiths a few months ago when they brought their new – and very local gin to our favourite watering hole – Malt the Brewery in Prestwood, and we were impressed as we sat there on a sunny Saturday afternoon watching people walk in, taste the gin and walk out having bought a bottle. Gin Tales seemed a great chance to learn a little more whilst enjoying our favourite drink – Gin!
Griffiths Brothers are based in Penn and the brothers have developed their own version of a cold distilled gin. Boyles Law – a chemist’s way of saying pressure, means that this is a cold distilled gin and best enjoyed straight from the fridge at 7-8 degrees C; there is even a handy little gizmo on the bottle that changes colour when your gin is at the right temperature.
Whilst Alex got started on the first drink – Drew gave us a brief history of gin; these Gin Friends are pretty clued up but others found this a very useful introduction and always good to remind ourselves of Hogarth’s Gin Lane.
Gin Number 1 – Griffiths Gin with Fever Tree tonic, plus fresh bay leaf and orange zest garnish. As we sipped, Drew explained that the bay was there to bind the flavours and the orange zest brings out the citrusy notes – and we certainly weren’t going to argue. It was a classic G&T and thoroughly enjoyable. Bearing in mind that this is a cold distilled gin, DRew also explained about louching – the process where the gin goes a little cloudy as the ice and mixer are added, thus releasing the oils from the gin and increasing the flavour. Boasting an impressive 13 botanicals: juniper, coriander, bay, angelica root, liquorice root, cassia bark, orange blossom, orange peel, lemon peel, orris root, barberries, grains of paradise and elderflowers – you can rest assured there is plenty of flavour to be tapped into!
We all agreed, this was the perfect G&T and we knew the evening could only get better!
Gin Number 2 – Griffiths Gin with Fever Tree Elderflower tonic and a cucumber garnish. This was very smooth and a lot sweeter than expected. DRew continued to tell us about how gin is distilled, as well as the particular process that they have chosen to use. Cold Distilling is a method that increases the intensity of flavours and there are only 3 or 4 other distillers who use this method. It also means that each botanical is distilled individually, this further increasing flavour. So proud are they of the method that the design on the bottle embodies this (and rescues me from having to explain it in too much detail!) Their current rotary evaporator is called Roberta; they are in conversation to have a custom made 200 litre rotary evaporator made who will be called Aretha. ( I hope you have made the soul music link there!)
Gin Number 3 – Griffith Gin with (our Favourite) Fever Tree Aromatic tonic and burnt orange – skillfully achieved using a blow torch. Oh My!! This was such a delicious drink – easily the favourite of these 2 Gin Friends, with a spicier, smoky taste – and just goes to prove how the choice of tonic and garnish can change the taste of your drink.
Sadly that was the lot for me as I was driving parentals to the airport at 4am next morning – but it was great to meet these 2 enthusiastic and knowledgeable guys. We hope there will be a Gin Tales 2, rumoured to involve the mixing of cocktails – and a visit to the distillery in Penn as soon as they are open for tours is definitely on the cards.
A huge thank you to my Gin Friends, and I am also incredibly excited that a Griffiths Brothers Gin cocktail night is on the cards…I will be there in person this time, rather than just in picture form!