Way back in February we started life wrapped up against the cold in one of the most attractive industrial units in all of Ireland. Now here we are in July and you could say that not much has changed. It’s still cold and the building is as attractive as ever.

The distillery yesterday
The distillery yesterday

However quite a lot has changed. In that time we have taken our base gin recipe scaled it up successfully and are now exporting. We’ve run a gin distilling workshop, gave the State back more in excise than we received from LEO and piloted some new products.

This last bit is very important. It’s not enough to roll out something and wait for someone to buy it. The product has to work and not all of our pilot projects have. But in September, some seven months after opening we should be able to release our second gin on to the market. We’ve trialed it, I’ve blogged about it and many of you have tasted it. I am talking about our Juniper Cask Gin – that is a gin rested in casks made from Juniper wood.

Even that description makes it sound easier than it was. For a start we had to find some Juniper. Then a cooper. Then work on whether to char the casks or not.


When the trial cask arrived we then had to work on the gin recipe. Our No.5 Gin didn’t work well enough for me, so we tweaked the mix. In the end we kept the same 12 botanicals, but altered the quantities. Then we had to play with time to work out how long the gin needed in wood, and then what strength to bottle at. All that before the label, bottle, cork, closure, box, barcode…

Test label

Anyway this week Nicola the Italian bottle man arrives in town with questions about design, screen printing and why the Irish put so much milk in a cappuccino. At the same time another side project, very left-of-field this time is coming together and should hit the market in a month or so – and all the time another spirit, very close to my heart inches towards production. Rome may not have been built in a day, but its a great place to drink a cappuccino.