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Darnley's cuts ribbon at Scottish distillery

Darnley's Gin is celebrating bringing production back to Scotland with the opening of its new gin distillery and visitor centre at Kingsbarns in the East Neuk of Fife.

Previously distilled in London, the award-winning premium Scottish gin will now be exclusively produced in Scotland where Darnley’s Gin founders, the Wemyss family, have lived and worked for centuries.

The new distillery is installed in what was once a derelict farm cottage tucked away in the grounds of its sister Kingsbarns Whisky Distillery. Now  refurbished, it marks a significant investment for the business and will support Darnley’s Gin’s ambitious growth plans both at home and in overseas markets.

The year-long renovation project of the Darnley’s Gin ‘cottage’ has focused on creating a distillery with traditional techniques and craftsmanship at its heart, incorporating copper stills from Italy. Crafting the spirit will be the responsibility of Fife local Scott Gowans, Darnley’s newly appointed gin distiller, who will oversee all aspects of production and recipe development.

Given the distillery’s location near St Andrew’s and Fife’s growing food and drink tourism scene, Darnley’s Gin has also invested in visitor tours to offer guests an intriguing behind the scenes experience of the gin - its production, heritage, taste and the role that botanicals play in the flavour of each Darnley’s Gin expression.

Tours will commence on 2 July, however there will be a free local open day on Saturday 1 July between 10am and 4pm as part of the East Neuk Festival, where guests can be amongst the first to visit the distillery and enjoy a sample of Darnley’s Gin, plus music from a local brass band.

Darnley’s Gin owner and managing director William Wemyss is looking forward to welcoming visitors and to getting production underway in the cottage. He commented: ‘From a business perspective this is a momentous investment for the future of Darnley’s Gin, following on from the recent refresh of our brand and the growth in demand for our high quality gin around the world. As a Scottish family business, it is also a decision that was an instinctive one for us, bringing the making of our gin home to a part of Scotland where we have such deep roots and a connection to the land and local communities. It’s also very exciting for us to be opening the doors of our ‘cottage distillery’ to share some of the behind the scenes magic that goes into making Darnley’s Gin with guests, especially as the number of visitors seeking Scottish food and drink experiences continues to rise.’

Darnley’s Gin is a premium award-winning, small batch London Dry Gin that harnesses almost two centuries of the Wemyss family's expertise in distinctive, high quality spirits. Each expression is masterfully distilled in a time honoured style, with the finest grain spirit.

Darnley’s Original Gin:  inspired by the elderflower growing wild in the grounds of the Wemyss family castle in Fife, this elegant gin uses a distinctive blend of six botanicals including elderflower, coriander and lemon peel, creating a classic juniper-led gin which is fresh, floral and vibrant. Bottled at 40%.

Darnley’s Spiced Gin: sparked by the Wemyss family’s spirit of adventure, this gin uses a distinctive blend of ten botanicals including cloves, ginger and grains of paradise. Contemporary in style, it is full and rounded with warm spice notes from cinnamon and nutmeg, followed by a lingering peppery finish. Bottled at 42.7%.

Darnley’s Spiced Gin ‘Navy Strength’: During their time at sea, ships’ officers used to enjoy a daily ration of gin which had to pass a gunpowder test to prove it was over 57% alcohol and therefore ‘Navy Strength’. This gin uses the same botanicals as Darnley’s Spiced Gin, with a touch more juniper and an increased proof for a bold gin with intense warming spice flavours. Bottled at 57.1%.

1 July 2017 - Sam Coyne The Drinks Report, news editor