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- Guest Blogger - 

Let me set up my stall, and begin to cast your mind back a bit…. To a time of trade and bounty, of new ingredients and exploration. Perhaps it’s market day, and you’re walking into your local town to pick up bread, milk, the usual suspects … As you cross over to Sutton Harbour in Plymouth, to the Old Dock in Liverpool, or Covent Garden in London, fresh, from the ships of the Navy, and from places you’ve never even heard of, there are new ingredients, aromas and colours, so bright and vibrant they seem otherworldly. Maybe there is one particular ingredient which excites you, you decide to stoop down and breathe it in. This, you decide, is your treat for the day, and you barter with the stall owner to take a piece of this tropical world home…. Already you’re buzzing and you haven’t even tasted it yet…. what a way to start off your weekly shop.


That my friends, was the world of a Gin distiller back in the 1800s and of one man, named James Burrough in particular. He had just returned from Canada, working as a chemist but was looking for a new challenge, and decided that Gin, the tipple of the time was to be his next mission. Mission successful? I think so, he created a 9-botanical recipe, hand-picked from the most exciting markets of London, and let them steep for 24 hours to lock in the flavour of their essential oils (a revolutionary method at the time). Juniper lead, and citrus forward, James Burrough was on to a winner. But still this Gin needed an identifiable symbol of its place of birth – London, where Beefeater has and will always be made. What was Burrough’s choice? Well a Beefeater of course. Now, with icon in mind James Burrough continued to make his own iconic Gin, winning more awards and experimenting further with flavours and with the produce of Covent Garden.


To this day Beefeater London Dry Gin is the world’s most awarded Gin. Its master distiller – Mr. Desmond Payne (who holds an MBE for services to Gin) is the world’s most experienced Gin distiller and a pioneer of the modern Gin industry. Our craft, quality and love for delicious Gin shows through all that we do, but all the awards we’ve earnt over the years wouldn’t mean anything if we didn’t respect and guard the recipes of James Burrough from 1863, and the inspiration he took from those markets. Looking back to our founder’s work we found a recipe of Orange Gin, and moving forward we adapted it, to create Beefeater Blood Orange; a bold, refreshing and bitter-sweet Gin. It’s juicy and like the colours of that market, striking in colour.


We can all agree that the backbars of pubs have changed almost beyond recognition in recent years. But what that change represents, and provides, is actually the excitement James Burrough must have had walking around Covent Garden, seeing coriander seed from Saxony, juniper berries from Tuscany and of course, oranges from Spain for the first time. Whilst our supermarket shop might not constitute the same experience of exploration, it is now, through popping into your local and ordering a G&T that we are in our own market journey, of new colours, flavours and taste sensations. And that, for me, seems like a pretty good and tasty deal, so let’s cheers to that!