The Old Curiosity Distillery dream began in 2012 when Co-Founder Hamish Martin and his wife Liberty purchased a
plot of land just outside of Edinburgh, it was abandoned waste land with nothing being grown there. They had a
vision however and began planning a ‘secret garden’. Their dream was realised and with Liberty’s eye for all things
vintage the abandoned waste land transformed into an award winning herb nursery, a place that supports and displays
local arts, a shop and cafe.
Hamish Martin had a successful career as a wine merchant but also had a keen interest in plants, he fulfilled a
lifelong passion and studied for a diploma in Herbology and put study into practice with what is undoubtedly the
huge success that is the ‘Secret Herb Garden’.
In 2016, Steve Ross, Co-Founder 2 joined the ‘Secret Herb Garden’ as a volunteer, his aim was to learn more about
the plants and in particular the powerful properties they contained. Previously Steve owned a successful bar in
South London and is an experienced Mixologist.
So what happens when you bring a Herbologist and Mixologist together? Magic happens! With many years of
experience in the drinks industry under their belt they have set out on a journey of gin creation. The inspiration
is of course the ‘The Secret Herb Garden’, an invaluable botanical source for this special range.
There is also an added WOW to the Old Curiosity Distillery, all three gins have natural colour changing
properties. When tonic is added to the gin it changes colour!
Old Curiosity Distillery have produced a magnficient range of gins, such care, thought and craftsmanship has gone
into each gin, it will be exciting to see what they do next.
The first gin to be produced in the Old Curiosity Distillery. The gin itself is pale pink in colour, and of course
magic happens when the tonic is added. The colour of the gin is transformed into beautiful rose pink hues.
There is a heady floral scent to Apothecary Rose, the delicate sweet rose notes are very present.
To taste it is deliciously floral as one would expect, however this does not dominate the gin, juniper tones
are also present. There is an earthiness that helps to balanced the floral flavours. This is a gin that has a
different flavour profile than perhaps you would expect from looking at the bottle
Recommended serve: Fever-Tree Indian Tonic Water and rose petals
Chamomile and Cornflower
You cannot help but be drawn in by the calming powder blue hues of the Chamomile & Cornflower Gin. When tonic water
is added the baby blue colour liquid changes to being completely crystal clear. Although this gin is delicate in
appearance it is actually very vibrant in scent and taste.
There are strong bursts of citrus on the palate, these are gently played off with herbal notes. Interesting yet
pleasurable flavours. There are last tones to this gin with citrus presenting itself again. A taste sensation.
Recommended serve: Schweppes 1783 light tonic water and ripe pear
Lavender and Echinacea
Known for their healing and soothing properties, Lavender and Echinacea are not botanicals you may think would be
found in gin however it works. As with all the gins in the Old Curiosity Distillery range they change colour, when
tonic is added it changes from deep purple to a light purple with pretty pink tones.
The scent, as you would expect is lavender, however there are layers of pine and citrus as well. It is a
beautifully complex flavour, light floral first off with a refreshing citrus burst. It is creamy and smooth with a
delightful crisp finish.
Recommended serve: Schweppes 1783 light tonic water and lemon