Welcome to our blog, where you can read posts about our gin and whisky brands.
August 6, 2015 – 2:10 pm by Alice Will
We can’t quite believe that it’s now been a 10 whole years since we launched Spencerfield Spirit. What a wonderfully hectic decade it’s been!
Throughout it all we’ve maintained a strong sense of Scottish provenance and family values, with the second generation of our family now as integral to the Spencerfield Spirit brand as the first.
Life & liquor before Spencerfield
Although Spencerfield Spirit as we know it has only recently reached the grand old age of 10, our flagship product Sheep Dip whisky has been on the market since way back in 1970.
In 1973 it was joined in the shelves of whisky retailers and Scotch lovers by our irresistibly smooth Pig’s Nose blend, followed in typically leisurely style by the 1990 Old Hebridean Sheep Dip vintage.
It wasn’t until 2005 that we united our brands under the name of our family farm, Spencerfiled. And the rest, as they say is history!
Introducing Edinburgh Gin & The Feathery
Since establishing Spencerfield Spirit 10 years ago we’ve not only expanded our whisky offering with The Feathery and several vintages of Sheep Dip; we’ve also built the Edinburgh Gin product from a simple idea into a nine-strong collection of natively inspired gins.
It all began with with our original, London Dry style Edinburgh Gin, created to evoke a taste of the Scottish capital through the use of locally sourced botanicals. We then turned to the hedgerows surrounding Spencerfield farm to inspire our collection of delicious gin liqueurs.
Edinburgh Gin Distilleries
It was with great pride that we opened our dedicated Edinburgh Gin Distillery in the heart of Scotland’s Capital in June 2014, just before celebrating our 9th birthday.
With two new custom-made stills bubbling away in the shadow of Edinburgh Castle, we were then in a position to offer a taste of Edinburgh not only via our gin, but also with tours and even gin making experiences.
It was during our distillery relocation to Edinburgh City Centre that we entered into a Knowledge Transfer Partnership with Heriot Watt University’s department of brewing and distilling.
As a result of this, our distillery team (and lately, the wider university department) have been instrumental in developing our Navy Strength Cannonball Gin and seasonal limited editions. These now number three limited edition gins – Edinburgh’s Christmas Gin, Edinburgh Valentine’s Gin, and Edinburgh Seaside Gin.
And for the future? We’re incredibly excited to be opening a second, larger Edinburgh Gin Distillery in Leith, the epicentre of Edinburgh’s historic distilling industry, with build on track for completion in autumn 2015.
Not only will our new distillery allow us to meet ever-growing demand for Edinburgh Gin – it also promises to facilitate acceleration through the export market, therefore expanding our global Spencerfield team.
With the bulk of production focussed in Leith, our city centre distillery team will continue to educate visitors on the heritage and production of gin, while the distillers set about experimenting with new botanical profiles and product development.
In true Spencerfield style we celebrated reaching double figures with a gin and whisky fuelled bash at our family farm in Inverkeithing. We’d like to thank everyone who joined us to toast a great decade as whisky ambassadors and gin innovators!
Some things at Spencerfield Spirit will never change – our Inverkeithing HQ, Edinburgh city distilleries and dedication to operating as a close-knit family business. But we are pioneers at heart, and are very much forging ahead with the development of new and exciting spirits – here’s to another decade, full of even more surprises and success than the last!
July 3, 2015 – 9:46 am by Alice Will
Our flagship gin and the first non-whisky product introduced to the Spencerfield Spirit range, Edinburgh Gin is an indisputable ode to the city where it’s made.
The Edinburgh Gin city centre distillery lies in the shadow of Edinburgh Castle. It’s here that our distillers regularly weigh out the unique blend of 13 classic and native Scottish botanicals that lend our gin its distinctively soft, Scottish flavour.
Each bottle of is small-batch distilled at our eponymous Edinburgh Gin Distillery using either our traditional pot still Flora, or column still Caledonia. Once bottled in the finest quality Italian glass, it’s distributed across the city, the nation and the world, taking a taste of Edinburgh to gin-lovers far and wide.
The inspiration for our original gin flourished from Edinburgh’s intoxicating gin history, and an adapted vintage recipe became the foundation for distilling the city’s first gin in many decades.
Our finished recipe combines gentle native heather, delicate milk thistle and fragrant pine (sourced in Scotland, of course) with fundamental gin botanicals including juniper, coriander, angelica and orris root plus a hint of refreshing citrus. The result is a London Dry style libation of unmistakably Scottish origin.
Give any classic gin cocktail a Caledonian twist with our original Edinburgh Gin. From mellowing your Martini to marrying perfectly with Rose’s Lime Cordial (also made in Edinburgh) in a Gin gimlet, our original gin is quite literally made for mixing.
Of course, Edinburgh Gin also sips sublimely in a classic gin and tonic. We recommend using great quality, neutral tonic water such as Fever-Tree, so the soft Scottish botanicals can really shine through.
And for a garnish? It has to be a zesty wedge of orange to enhance the blossomy, citrus notes . Chin chin!
May 14, 2015 – 12:33 pm by Alice Will
Made entirely from malt whisky matured in sherry casks, it has a rich sweetness with a full, rounded mouth feel – echoing the spherical nature of its namesake.
Those au fait with Scotland’s most prestigious sport may well be acquainted with ‘the feathery’.
An avian species of sorts, ‘the feathery’ is the name given to Scotland’s earliest golf balls. Painstakingly crafted, the leather and goose-or-duck down balls revolutionised play by bringing another level of liveliness to the game.
Meticulously handmade – sometimes by the Champions who would use them, according to The R&A – feathery golf balls were made by filling a leather pouch with exactly one top hat’s full of feathers. A wonderful, gentlemanly quirk in the story that we’re very fond of!
Importantly, the leather ‘skin’ needed to be watertight to keep the buoyant, air-filled feathers inside dry. This entailed toiling over and thoroughly oiling every millimetre of the ball’s surface, not to mention neatly bonding every seam by hand – all in pursuit of golfing perfection.
One of the first commercial operations to undertake production of feathery golf balls was, in fact, just across the water from our East Coast Spencerfield Family Farm. The manufacturer was leather workshop and shoemakers “the cordiners & gowf ball manufacturers of North Leith”.
By 1883, the New Statistical Account informs us that individual commercial producers of the feathery balls were making between 50 and 60 each, per week. This gives you some idea of the skill and time dedicated to honing superior golfing equipment.
The result of their labour of love? A robust, smooth, streamlined ball with characteristics that at once mimic and inspire our blended malt.
Smooth, by nature dry, and with a long satisfying finish (just like a great round), The Feathery Scotch was fated for it’s association with the original golf ball. Here’s to a whisky that stands on a par with the same dedication to perfection!
May 11, 2015 – 5:28 pm by Alice Will
It’s with great pride that we share news of our recent successes at the Ultimate Spirits Challenge Awards!
A bastion of quality, the Ultimate Spirits Challenge recruits only the most knowledgeable experts in the drinks industry as judges; the 2015 panel featured award-winning authors, buyers, journalists, educators and bar owners including event Chairman, Paul Pacult.
This year’s event subjected participants to particularly rigorous adjudication, with smaller categories allowing to the judges to compare the subtlest nuances of each drink variety. Thankfully, this only served to secure our triumph…
Hosted in a new, purpose built judging facility in New York, the Utlimate Spirits Challenge evaluates participating beverages on a 100-point scale, with the best receiving the Chairman’s Trophy and Finalist awards. It is our very great honour here at Spencerfield Spirit to tell you that two of our exceptional drams picked up these titles in the Scotch Blended Whiskies Category this year!
It goes without saying that we consider the latest iteration of our classic Sheep Dip Whisky, Sheep Dip Islay, to be cracking blend. So, we’re absolutely over the moon that our hard work developing it has been recognised with the Chairman’s Trophy for its category.
Having tallied up an impressive 96 points out of 100, our Sheep Dip Islay came out as a clear winner with judge’s describing it as “extraordinary” and their “ultimate recommendation”.
Their in-depth tasting notes further explained, “roasted peaches and tomato aromas mingled with notes of campfire smoke on the expressive nose. Flavours in the mouth are thoroughly smoky with sweet undertones of sugared grains, creating a pleasant balance that is long lasting.”
Distilled on the southernmost Hebridean isle, Sheep Dip Islay’s distinctively smoky character is achieved by drying the barley over a traditional peat fire. Accents of iodine, seaweed and salt are imparted through long maturation in oak barrels on the Atlantic Coast.
Another stamp of recognition imparted to Sheep Dip Islay is the Tried & True award – recognising ‘brands that provide unfailing quality to consumers year after year’ –and it certainly is a must-try for anyone who already counts his-or-herself a fan of our original Sheep Dip Whisky!
Coming a close runner up in the Ultimate Spirits Challenge 2015 was the first expression in our range celebrating Scottish craftsmanship – The Feathery.
Awarded 93/100 points to secure a finalist position, judges described The Feathery as an “excellent and highly recommended dram”.
Matured exclusively on sherry woods, this bottling is sweeter and rounder than standard malts – here are the judge’s tasting notes:
“Fruit aromas are of muddled berries and stone fruit. Fresh on the palate with lightly fruity flavours of peaches balanced with rich nutmeg and barley. The finish is marked by subtle caramel and light roasted coffee beans.”
Along with flavour profiles, the Ultimate Spirits Challenge panel identified the ultimate cocktail recipe for each blend, pin-pointing a classic Whisky Sour as the ideal creation to feature both whiskies.
When we inevitably find ourselves making one with each blend, we’ll be sure to let you know how they taste!
July 19, 2013 – 1:48 pm by Lisa
Wow! What an amazing (and crazy-busy!) couple of months here at Spencerfield! Here are some of our highlights:
- Edinburgh Gin wins Another Award! Winning a Master in the Premium category of the Gin Masters 2013
- Raspberry Gin being featured on ITV’s This Morning – and Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby loving it!!
- The launch of our fab new gifty things – http://www.spencerfieldspirit.com/shop/gifts/
- Meeting thousands and thousands of our lovely, happy customers at the Highland Show, the Scottish Game Fair, Yorkshire Show, BBC Good Food Show, Taste of Grampian, Crail Food Festival, Loch Fyne etc etc etc… (told you we’ve been busy!)
- Sampling our new flavoured gin being launched in August…
- Getting national listing for Edinburgh Gin, Raspberry Gin and our new flavoured gin in John Lewis
And that’s just some of what we’ve been up to! Remember to follow us on Twitter @Edinburgh_Gin for more updates!
October 29, 2012 – 4:45 pm by Lisa
Our very own Raspberry Gin was featured on this weekend’s edition of Channel 4′s Sunday Brunch, tried and tested by the hosts Tim and Simon, along with the boys from JLS! It was given great reviews all round and we have been inundated with Raspberry Gin orders from the moment the segment aired!
Our Perthshire Raspberry infused Edinburgh Gin is handmade in small batches in the heart of Scotland. It is made from a traditional family recipe using locally sourced raspberries, matured with the award winning Edinburgh Gin and pure cane sugar. It can be enjoyed on its own or with soda, but our favoured way is with champagne or cava – just add a dash of Raspberry Edinburgh Gin to your favourite champagne or cava for the perfect champagne cocktail.
June 22, 2012 – 3:45 pm by Jane
Do come and visit our stand in the Food Hall at the Highland Show. Plenty of Edinburgh Gin, Raspberry Gin and whisky all on sale. A better day today (Friday) weather wise, but thanks to all our customers yesterday who braved the rain to come and see our stand. Hoping the weather holds, but at least we are dry!
June 19, 2012 – 1:12 pm by Jane
Various gifts including cups, glasses and presents will be on display. We will be offering samples of our spirits including our various whiskies. Try the new Amoroso Oloroso for something different and buy before it’s all gone.
Let’s hope the weather is good! See you there. Tweet
June 19, 2012 – 12:35 pm by Jane
Spencerfield Spirit will be at the Edinburgh 10′s Rugby Festival on Saturday 23 June. Come and join Hattie at our pop-up bar, where she will be serving gin and tonics for £3. She will be there from 10am until the bar shuts at 6pm. The best 10s Rugby Festival takes place at the home of the Edinburgh Accies, the oldest rugby club in Scotland. You will find us at Raeburn Place in Stockbridge, Edinburgh.
May 29, 2012 – 1:07 pm by Jane
Spencerfield Spirit has won the Export Business of the Year Award part of the prestigious Scotland Food and Drink Excellence Awards. The award is sponsored by Clydesdale Bank.
Alex Nicol, Managing Director, of Spencerfield Spirit Company, located in Fife, was delighted to accept the award and extended his thanks to the judging panel, he said that winning the Export of the Year Award is a fantastic boost to our Company and the result of team work, from my family, office staff, agents and distributors .
Spencerfield Spirit has achieved so much for a small family run business. This has included investment and time in finding and working with quality importers and including navigating the complex import and labelling requirements of different countries. Nicol went on to say our ongoing objective will be to continue expanding our international markets.
Spencerfield Spirit, which is a family run business, has enjoyed a year of strong export growth, with expanding markets in the US, Australia, Spain, Netherlands and France.
At the same event last year, Spencerfield scooped the Drink Alcoholic and Non-Alcoholic award for their Edinburgh Gin.
The 2012 Scotland Food and Drink Excellence awards were presented at a sparkling ceremony at the Dunblane Hydro Hotel, last Thursday (24 May) Spencerfield Spirit Company now looks forward to being the exclusive gin this year at Edinburgh International Book Festival.