Rathfinny Wine Estate

Spirit of Sussex

The saying goes “boys and their toys”, and in this case my little eyes did light up when I saw the contraption above.  A wonderful copper pot still with column and condenser to the side.  You just want to stroke it and hope that it goes ‘whizz, pop, bang’ – or is that just me?

This particular distillation machine is the medium sized one at Silent Pool in Surrey where our super smooth Sussex sparkling wine based gin is conjured into life.  I wonder if I can get more alliteration overload?  I visited Silent Pool today to discuss the next batch of gin which is bubbling away within their copper still and checked on our chosen botanicals as they are steeped for 24hrs to extrude all the flavour profiles for us.  Yum.

Last night we were invited to a charity event in aid of Chailey Heritage Foundation which was held in the grand surroundings of Hendall Manor Barns.  The Foundation is set up to support children and young people with complex disabilities and ensure they can pursue their full potential.  Folkington’s (local tonic producer) orchestrated a night of gin (and some tonic).  The added twist was that the seven gins on show were all from East Sussex – all great gins with different ratios of botanicals, suggested pours etc, but all highlighting how lucky we are to have such a breadth of local produce in Sussex.  Our Seven Sisters Gin (which is of course the best) was joined by Brighton Gin, Tom Cat, Harley House, Mayfield, Slake and Foxhole Gin.

Over a hundred guests were able to sample the gins on show and of course raise money for the charity.  Our little display above illustrates the botanicals in our bottles.  The nine elements above are found in many gins just in different ratios to perhaps highlight key elements or bring support to specific flavour profiles.  Not only is Rathfinny’s Seven Sisters the best (because I say so) but we are also different because of the one botanical which I didn’t have on show – our grapes.  The quality of our Sussex grapes has to be exceptional before they can be made into our sparkling wine.  However, we do not use the entire contents of the grape for our sparkling and it would be a huge shame to waste this wine ‘elixir’.  Hence our gin.

On a different note and moving away from alcohol, Rathfinny were recently awarded the certificate shown below…

I think it does what it says and more will be explained in my next blog.

Wow, a whole blog without me mentioning the launch of our sparkling wine on the 24th April….so excited, its been a long journey full of passion and professionalism and we can’t wait to share our wine with you.   I’m so excited I think I need a stiff drink….gin anyone?

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  • Great article, a CARL still perchance? Looking forward to trying your Sussex sparklers. Will you be sharing a list of retail and restaurant outlets at launch? Would love the chance to buy pint bottles despite being a avid pro-European.

    • One venue I can share is that the Savoy will be using our wines for the month of May for afternoon teas. More details to follow..

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