Meet The ‘Team’ at The Shropshire Distillery
At The Shropshire Distillery we make it our priority to provide real, honest spirits.
Since opening the business in 2018 we have always strived, and continue to be hands on and deeply rooted in every step of the distilling process to reflect our dedication to creating excellent products.
The process may be a lengthy and thorough one, but it’s worthwhile when sipping on your favourite Shropshire Distillery beverage. Let me introduce you to 'the team', and join me as we explore the processes we use to produce an honest spirit of the finest quality.
Our 'Working Girls'
Introducing 'Jean and Anne', the working girls of the distillery - Jean being the OG and although the second still to join The Shropshire Distillery, she is the first larger scale still that enabled us to start production back in 2018. Anne was introduced 6 months later, following increased demand and enabled us to upscale production. Both being the size they are to fit in our cosy 'Gin Shed' when we were based at home but both still continuing to create small batch quality spirits of 80-100 bottles per batch.
Please don't think I have drank too much gin, keep referring to our equipment by name, traditionally distillers name their stills after influential females, most of ours, yes we have 10 Copper pot stills in the distillery now, are named after females within both our families.
Let me explain..... oh and yes I do talk and chat to the girls, daily :)
Eileen: Our first ever copper pot still, used to develop our recipes and is named after one of my grandmothers. Eileen is still used for development today and remains one of the true persevering girls at the Distillery.
Gin School Girls:
Lily Mai: named after our daughter - the reason for everything!
Jennifer: Gareth's Mum
Aurora: Aurora found her name for the significance of the Northern lights, as each distillation created at the Gin school is unique and different. There is also the notion that you are a “Sleeping Beauty” after a few gins!
Sandra: Emma's mum
Calla: There was no better name for our persistently hard working copper still than that of our Hungarian Vizsla and distillery mascot, Calla. Calla is the same colour as the spot still and which left us with no choice but to also share her name!
Cleo: Inspired by the original bootlegger Gertrude Lythgoe, who was nicknamed Cleo, afree “father-loving Goddess looks”, just like Cleopatra.
Diana: As a DC and Marvel geek, we couldn’t help but name at least one of our girls Diana after the one-and-only Wonder Woman, but also a nod to the Queen of People’s Hearts, Princess Diana.
We also have a vacuum Still, called Hermonine, which allows us to distill on a lower temperature to create smaller batch more intense and concentrated flavours and bitters etc - Lily was in charge of naming and was very much into Harry Potter at the time!
There are plans to introduce a larger still into the team over the next 12months, who we already have a name for, and with this comes larger holding tanks for our spirits - Gareth has insisted the tanks will be named after the 'gents' in the family !
Now you've met the 'Working Girls', lets explore the process in which they help create our multi awarding winning spirits:
The Distilling Process
Step One – Botanical Selection
Our family team select the finest world botanicals, all chosen with reason and having been carefully considered. Every one of our gins has it’s own unique recipe.
Step Two – Loading The Stills
'Jean' and 'Anne are loaded with neutral grain spirit and only enough botanicals to make one distillation - a technique known as ‘one shot’ distilling - never making a gin concentrate or adding spirit after distillation, the stills are then sealed and heated up ready for the distillation to begin
Step Three – Collecting The Hearts
We craft our gin from head to tail, but only the pure hearts go into every bottle, By being hands on, we collect only the purest of hearts of the distillation. We cut the Heads and Tails judged on time, temperature as well as nose and taste to ensure a super smooth gin.
We distill our spirts low and slow taking our time - you can't rush quality!
Step Four – Blending
Purified water, which essentially is good old Severn Trent Tap water, is extracted through our on site Reverse Osmosis system to remove minerals, particles etc - basically it removes anything that isn't water. We purify on demand so that we are not storing water as well as reducing waste.
The now purified water is slowly, over three - four days, blended with our hearts to gain the desired alcohol bottling strength.
Step Five – Bottling
Once the blending process is complete and the distillate has rested, its time to bottle up!
Each one of our spirits is individually filtered and bottled, by hand, using our vacuum bottling machine, giving our creations the 1:1 attention they deserve.
Step 6 – Labelling
No bottle is complete without a label which we individually place with love and care on each bottle, before being ready to be shipped out to our customers and UK stockists.
As the final part of the production process, it’s not only a quality sign off point, but a sign of our products being one step closer to you, and it allows us to handle each finished product, showing that the hard work really does pay off!
None of what we do would be possible without all of our hard working equipment and we are forever grateful for the high quality products we have the privilege of creating and delivering to you every single day.
To find out more about our journey and have the opportunity to meet our working girls, click here to book on to one of our Distillery Experiences today which include; Tsasting, Tour & Talk, Gin School and Cocktail Masterclass.