Innovative gin

How to innovate with gin

March 8, 2018

Gin is experiencing a resurgence in popularity and one boutique distiller experiencing particularly meteoric success, is Silent Pool Distillery in Surrey. It launched in 2016 with a plan to produce just 7,000 bottles but is now served in 24 countries and will this year produce 250,000 bottles. It has collaborated with British Airways and Eurostar and has imaginative plans for further growth.

Distillery manager Tom Hutchings (pictured) explains that the gin’s creation has been a labour of love for the team working with founder Ian McCulloch who after retiring from a career in TV thought creating a new bespoke gin might ‘just be a bit of fun’. Some 600 small trial distillations and 30 full-size still runs later, the signature gin was ready for launch and a bunch of new product ideas were in the pipeline.

The gin is created using 24 botanicals and has been inspired by a natural, spring-fed pool (Silent Pool) in the heart of the Albury Estate, owned by the Duke of Northumberland. The company lease buildings from the estate – paying part of their rent in gin – and have drawn on ancient local myths for the brand’s look. The scenic pool is said to be haunted by a young maiden who drowned here after rebuffing the advances of a young King John in the 1200s. This historic tale is depicted on the intricate bottle design in copper on blue glass to reflect the copper still and the pool’s clear water.

Some 100,000 litres a day can be drawn off the pool and used to create the alcoholic blank canvas into which the botanicals are added. Tom explains: “Our aim was to create a world-class gin you can sip neat. We go to great lengths to source the best of junipers – currently from Bosnia and Macedonia – and then add botanicals found around Silent Pool such as lavender, elder, linden, angelica, orris and chamomile. We pre-soak some in masceration tanks and use an infusion of others to balance the flavours. We’ve had a lot of fun creating it and are excited it has been so well received.


Each distillation takes four hours

The distillery’s steam boiler is wood-fed every 20 minutes

Silent Pool will debut an English whisky next year

All bottling is done on site to ensure high standards