It’s not uncommon in the wine industry to use grapes from a single vineyard to make a particular white or red wine, or for whisky distillers to use a single malt. However, it is a rare practice when it comes to distilling other spirits such as gin.
Bass & Flinders Distillery has a traditional and unique method of distilling. All of their gins, spirits, liqueurs and brandies are created from Victorian grapes, sourced from a single vineyard. Making their practice a unique vine-to-bottle operation and a one of a kind distillery.
Working closely with the grape grower and winemaker allows the distillery to ensure grapes are harvested at their ideal ripeness to create the finest quality and smooth textured eau de vie – the handcrafted base spirit used across their product range.
Bass & Flinders Distillery have had a close relationship with their Victorian winegrower since 2009, to grow grapes and make wine to a defined quality and product specification. The vineyard has produced award-winning Shiraz wines for over 40 years and now, that same Shiraz provides a base for all Bass & Flinders‘ gins.
The bold flavour profile of the wine complements the gin’s botanical profile, making it the perfect grape selection for gin production.
“Whilst most gin makers focus on the botanical blend, we decided to utilise the quality and characteristics of the base spirit itself”, said Holly Klintworth, the head distiller at Bass & Flinders, “We believe this holistic approach to our gins, brandy and liqueurs makes for high-quality products with full flavour and texture that remain true to their source by celebrating the character of the vineyard.”
The use of wine in the production of Bass & Flinders’ gins carries with it some additional challenges. The fruit and wine may vary with the season and it’s the role of the distiller to match the botanicals with the grape spirit and make sure the final product has a high level of consistency each year.
While small-batch variations are a natural part of the artisanal craft, the slight variations between vintages add to the uniqueness and charm of the handcrafted Bass & Flinders range.