Boutique Bega gin start-up North of Eden has been honoured with two medals at the 2019 International Wine & Spirit Competition less than a year after its launch. The small-batch distillery hails from the NSW Far South Coast and picked up gongs for two of its popular styles – silver for The Classic and bronze for The Connoisseur. Both of the award-winning bottles are true London Dry gins, meaning no flavours or syrups have been added at the end of the process. The spirits are handmade in small batches using traditional methods and feature premium pickings from the farm’s orchards, including native Australian finger limes and locally foraged kelp. Every detail of the gin-making process has been carefully considered, from the traditional copper alembic stills handmade in Portugal (shout-outs to two-litre Eve, 10-litre Charlie and 100-litre Jill) to the 14-to-16-hour wait and the continual taste-testing in lieu of automation. (Although that one sounds more like a perk to us.)
It’s been a labour of love for founders Gavin Hughes and Karen Touchie, who swooped on the 12-acre Stony Creek Farm just outside of Bega and spent the following year transforming its old farm shed into a gin distillery. The project was completed in October 2018, but the long hours and hard work have continued with all their beloved products being blended, bottled and labelled by hand. Their Classic Gin was specifically crafted to make the ultimate G&T and features zesty notes of citrus, juniper foundations and floral layers. The Connoisseur is a full palate experience and forms the perfect base for cocktail experimentation. Citrus, berry and floral notes complement its light mineral layers and generous juniper foundations. Shop online or head to Tartufo in Fortitude Valley for a taste.
Image: David Rogers