Country Rhubarb with Ginger Ginfusion
Rather than something always cold and refreshing, we had long wanted to develop a spirit that would be suited to being heated, perfect for the cooler days. Our inspiration was simple; we wanted to promote the sensation of heat. Both in terms of flavour and in temperature.
The prime candidate was clear from the beginning: Ginger - a root used all over the world in medicine and cuisine. The question then became "What natural ingredient could stand up to this heat"? The answer was almost instant - Rhubarb. A vegetable with robust flavours that gives tart, juicy sourness.
To get the best out of every spirit we create, the first few steps are always important. Try to use local, try to get it fresh.
As many of you would know by now, our production processes can be ... laborious to say the least. We're all too familiar with the pains of scrubbing, peeling and cutting. This was no different!
Stalk by stalk, we washed and cut mountains of this stuff. Even trimming undesirable bits as we went. The colour and smell was unreal. Fresh, 'green' and astringent - far removed from the stewed rhubarb that most are familiar with.
Rorschach test: Candy, jewels... fingers? We ditched the paring knives and brought in something more substantial.
Now we're talking! Just like Grandma used to make (kinda?). This stuff is powerful and intense. We're getting into familiar territory. The whole distillery smells like a jam jar or baked pie.
The 'fun' parts are over. Forget using micron filtration (ie: really, really small and fine). To retain most of the flavour we're doing this the old-school way. That's right - a series of kitchen sieves. We won't divulge all of our secrets but Darcy definitely had one of the dirtiest jobs...
And look at that colour – it’s pink!
Remember the 'fusion' part in 'Ginfusion'? Our little workhorse has been running day and night making our Classic Dry gin, the basis for many of our spirits.
After some 'super secret' blending techniques, the flavours and aromas are just about perfect. The colour doesn't look bad either.
Forget the 'art' for a minute, it's time to get a bit technical. Usually the density meter works perfectly when determining alcoholic strength. However, what do you do if you don't want sugar and fruit particles to break your expensive machine? Test distill.
How's the flavour? Tastes good. What about the strength? Accurate. Green light - let's get it in the bottle. I still remember doing this with a single nozzle filler. Four automatic nozzles aren't bad, but a fully automated production system would be something. A man can dream.
Getting closer. This is where it starts getting exciting again. A new creation coming together.
And.. voila, isn't that something? Just like the rain, hail and arctic winds of Melbourne, this is looking crisp. The overcast lighting was also perfect for this shot.
And there we have it, friends. Concept to creation. It took a few months but we made it in time to complement the heaters and fireplaces of Melbourne and beyond. Best enjoyed with a slice of ginger and apple, topped with a splash of hot (not boiling) water.