By James Atkinson

Consumers worldwide are rapidly embracing small batch spirits from craft distilleries, according to Sam Galsworthy, founder of London-based Sipsmith Independent Spirits.

Galsworthy told TheShout that Australia is now Sipsmith’s second biggest market behind the UK, with 100 or more top end accounts each in Sydney, Melbourne and Perth after arriving here just 18 months ago.

”I don’t think we had that in London within our first year,” he said.

Sam Galsworthy (centre) with the Sipsmith team

Galsworthy and Sipsmith’s Australian distributor, Hippocampus Memorable Drinks, attribute the rapid take-up of the brand to the burgeoning small bar scene emerging in Australian cities. 

But he said the growth of craft spirits is an international trend, pointing out that when Sipsmith was launched in London in 2009, it was the city’s first copper still since Beefeater in 1823.

“Now there are six new distilleries in London, and outside of London there’s probably nine or ten,” Galsworthy said.

Producing just 400 bottles a day, Galsworthy said Sipsmith is struggling to keep up with global demand for its products.

“What we make in a year Beefeater makes between 9 and 10.30 in the morning,” he said.

Sipsmith recently added a second pot still, allowing it to double its output without increasing the batch size, which Galsworthy argues is crucial to retaining the quality of the product. A third still will arrive early next year.

He told TheShout that Sipsmith will soon be introducing to Australia its newest product, VJOP London Dry Gin (Very Junipery Over Proof – pictured), a “triple-junipered” gin that comes in at 57.7 per cent and is ideally suited to cocktails such as negronis.

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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