The increasing popularity of gin seems to be showing no signs of stopping and Scotland has become a huge distilling pot for artisan producers who are bringing their own version of 'Mother's Ruin' to the market.
When I visited The Good Food Show Scotland at Glasgow's SECC recently, there were a number of gin producers in attendance who were all doing a roaring trade as the public went wild for their gin. In fact, there was one gin producer that was so busy that I never managed to get anywhere near their stand, and that was Daffy's Gin. Fortunately, I did manage to catch up with the team at Daffy's a few weeks later when they were attending The Foodies Festival at the EICC in Edinburgh.
The first bottle of Daffy's Gin rolled off of the production line exactly one year ago today (01/12/14) but despite this, Daffy's can proudly boast to being 'the finest copper pot single batch distilled gin' in the world after the IWSC presented them with a gold award at the first time of asking. This coupled with distinctive branding and imagery and a quirky brand name steeped in history - Daffy was the Goddess of Gin and first written about in the 1700's - Daffy's Gin may well be the new kid on the block but have big plans to be the gin of choice to the discerning drinker.
I managed to catch up with Chris Molyneaux, creator of Daffy's Gin, at The Foodies Festival and disputed the crowds gathering round the stand, he was able to give me a quick introduction to Daffy's as well as sending me off with the better part of a quarter bottle of gin to enjoy at home.
Here's Chris's story;
How did you get started?
When I was 14 by grandfather opened my eyes to the glamorous world of wine. I then wrote off to a load of vineyards in France where I trained as a winemaker and learnt to distill. I always had a dream of one day founding my own drinks company and it all came together a few years ago in a conversation with a good distilling friend where we decided that the world needed a London Dry Gin so good that you could drink it straight like the finest of malt whiskies. So I started working on inventing a new distilling process and recipe and in December last year we produced our first bottle of Daffy’s!
What’s the best piece of business advice you could give?
Keep reminding yourself to have fun! There can be a lot of work, pressure, admin and stress in getting a new company off the ground but at the same time there is a lot of great things to focus on and enjoy, especially in the drinks industry!
Where would you like to see your business in 5 years time?
Being more established as a brand that many people are aware of an love and continuing with the creative ideas and innovations that we love to work on together as a team.
If you could only enjoy your product one way, what would it be & why?
Straight over ice with feet up infront of a roaring fire. The goal was to create a London Dry that had a lot of complexity and finesse that you could sit and savour it this way and at the same time that would give our gin the edge when used in cocktails due to its quality and the many dimensions of the spirit.
You can invite one person (living or dead) to your last meal – Who would it be and why? …and what’s on the menu?
Mignonne, my wife and muse for Robert McGinnis’ illustration on the front of our bottle as these days with the hectic business of day to day life, any extra time together we’ll take.. and perhaps eating a feast of sushi… it goes very well with gin you know! (Robert McGinnis is famous for his iconic artwork for Hollywood movies such as Breakfast at Tiffany's, Barbarella, and several James Bond Films including You Only Live Twice, Thunderball, Live & Let Die, and my favourite James Bond movie, The Man With the Golden Gun)
Crafted to be enjoyed straight over ice like a fine malt whisky, or to make the perfect Negroni or a classic D&T, Daffy's uses the finest French grain, Lebanese mint and the finest botanical to create a complex yet perfectly balanced gin that is very smooth despite the 43.3% ABV strength.
I have to admit that although the gin is smooth enough to drink neat, I prefer to enjoy my Daffy's in the perfect serve Daffy's D&T with Fever Tree Tonic, which is what I had on Saturday night at the Finnieston.
Daffy's is now available in a large number stores, bars and restaurants across the UK of so if you fancy treating yourself to the world's best gin, check out the website to find your nearest stockist.
I would like to thank Chris for taking the time out to answer 5 Questions and wish the team at Daffy's all the best for the future. Keep up to date with all the news from Daffy's on Facebook and Twitter.