How and where did Tarquin’s Gin begin?
Founded in 2012, Tarquin began distilling on a 70cl still on his kitchen stove, when he finally came up with his recipe for Tarquin’s Cornish Dry Gin. After a year of experiments, we finally sold our first case to the Gurnard’s Head pub just past St Ives.
What makes you different to other craft gin companies?
We have a unique approach to making our gins, combining traditional techniques and equipment, like our flame-fired copper pot stills, with modern experimentation and flavour profiles. We are always trying to achieve balance in our gins, using combinations of botanicals and fresh pressed fruit to create unique, drinkable gins with no artificial flavours, colours or additives.
How do you source your ingredients?
We always try to source our ingredients as close to home as possible, using British organic neutral grain spirit as our base, and sometimes even foraging ingredients from our local beaches, such as Cornish saffron from the Roseland or rock samphire which we pick near the distillery. However, some botanicals are not grown in the UK so we have to look worldwide; for example, our juniper is from Sicily.
Please can you briefly describe your bottling and labelling process?
Our entire process is still done by hand, with about 45 people in production, labelling, filing, waxing, and stamping every single bottle. We think a human touch to every bottle is a sign of quality and we intend to continue to have this as part of our production ongoing.
What are your favourite Tarquin’s cocktail recipes for summer and winter?
In summer you can’t go wrong with our Blood Orange Spritz - 50ml Tarquin’s Blood Orange Gin, 100ml soda, a splash of elderflower cordial, topped with Prosecco and garnished with a wedge of orange. In winter, we love a Negroni – equal parts Tarquin’s Cornish Dry Gin (or SeaDog Navy Strength), Red Vermouth, Campari, all stirred over a large ice cube and garnished with orange peel.
Please can you tell us a bit more about your partnership with Dick Pearce Bellyboards?
We’ve been working with Jamie and the team for years now, creating different designs on bellyboards each summer. In the past 12 months they’ve gone from strength to strength and have been doing a huge amount for eco-board riding and avoiding disposable foam boards - we love working with them!
Any other Cornish brands inspiring you at the moment?
We love some of the businesses who have adapted incredibly well during lockdown and the last 12 months. For example, Prawn on the Farm, realising they had too little space at the ‘Prawn on the Lawn’ venue in Padstow and launched a pop-up on Trerethern Farm which serves incredible food. We also love some of the brands who are out there doing good. We’re working with Surfer’s Against Sewage on beach cleans after summer, Cornwall Wildlife Trust who are doing incredible things like re-introducing otters to the area and Waterhaul who are taking ghost nets and making sunglasses out of them. Cornwall is full of really inspirational projects which we love supporting and seeing grow.