The Spirit of the Rock Story…
In the beginning
The inspiration for opening the Spirit of the Rock gin distillery in Gibraltar came whilst walking to Europa Point on a beautiful sunny morning in November 2017.
The previous evening had been spent at an artist friend’s house. Perhaps it was the proximity to this creative talent, the eclectic mix of guests or the bloody good gin served. But, either way it set me up for some positive energy filtration.
The Craft Gin industry was blooming in the U.K. and the trend showed no signs of slowing; my background in aromatherapy (distilling essential oils) and my love of craft gins lead me to the eureka moment of ‘OMG what a great industry for Gibraltar’! This small country that I call home, punches way above its weight in so many fields that it deserves a premium product that will hopefully have global appeal.
Arriving home, bursting with excitement, I explained my idea to my one and only, Peter. Now here is a man who has many talents: a background in physics and chemistry, a lover of amateur dramatics and obviously gin. He of course saw the merits in the idea, and the more we researched, the more passionate we became. After attending numerous gin distillery tours in London and tasting more and more gin, without I’m proud to say suffering a single hangover, he felt this was the perfect new adventure.
And so…the training began. With the help and guidance of Vanessa Rapier and Matt Servini (master distiller) and founders of The Craft Distilling Business we developed our blend for Campion. Their patience and expertise gave us the confidence and determination to get our fledgling business off the ground.
The Spirit of the Rock Premises
You can’t start a new business without a good premises. Enter stage left ‘Josh’ from Levy estate agents. ‘I know just the place’ and he was right, 8 George’s Lane was absolutely perfect and the landladies although hesitant to begin with, were courageous enough to say yes.
Remember, this is the first distillery of its kind in Gibraltar so they were very brave indeed. Although not ready yet, we will be setting it up to conduct tours and tastings.
Gibraltar has a wealth of history that ties in so well with the history of gin that all who attend a distillery tour will be the richer for it. For instance 8 George’s Lane was first cited in the records soon after 1704 when the British and the Dutch took possession of the Rock, emboldened by their ration of “Dutch courage” aka Gin.
Gibraltar is the North Pillar of Hercules which is why we named our beautiful copper still Athena. She is Heracles’s half sister renowned for her wisdom, courage, military victories, strength and the arts and crafts.
All these attributes and more reflect the true Spirit of the Rock.
Our promise to you
Our original Campion recipe combines the essential botanicals Juniper, Coriander, Orris and Angelica with classic liquorice, cardamon, cassia bark, clove and orange. However, the addition of Lemongrass, Rose, Carob and Campion gives this London Dry Gin a deep, well rounded and sophisticated note worthy of the “ Spirit of the Rock” brand. Its mellowness belies its strength of 48% ABV.
Reduce, Re Use, and Re cycle
High Quality - Hand made
Spirit of the Rock Gins are hand made in small batches, with only the very best ingredients.
Premium quality spirits are our passion.
Promoting Gibraltar to visitors from around the World
Campion (the gin)
Packing a punch at 48% ABV our first copper stilled Gin had to be a London Dry Gin to honour the 300 year bond with the U.K. and the armed forces.
Traditional in many respects, strong on Juniper with Coriander, Liquorice, Cassia, Orange, Lemongrass, Cardamon and Clove. The harmonising stars are the unusual addition of Carob pods , Rosebuds and Campion seeds. Strong, smooth and memorable. Perfect in a very Dry Martini, excellent in a Negroni, and refreshing in a Gin and Tonic (Fever-tree Mediterranean) with a twist of orange. Cheers!
Campion (silene tomentosa)
This flower was thought to be extinct but then miraculously rediscovered in 1992 by a local botanist. Found growing wild nowhere else in the world this valiant little plant has beaten all the odds so we are honoured to name the only gin distilled in Gibraltar after it.
Its seeds are now held in the seed bank at Kew Gardens so its future is secure, it is also being propagated in the Alameda Gardens in Gibraltar.
Spirit of the Rock
8 George’s Lane