In October 2017, the site had been located. The first chapter of the creation of the distillery was to design the layout of the distillery. The gin still would need to be supported by a spirit lab. The spirit lab would be the birth place of each new spirit produced at the distillery. Katherine sketched out the concept and basic plans and together with our friends at Hoare Laboratory Engineering a unique spirit lab was designed, built and commissioned.
Two 2 litre (The Twins) and one 20 litre (our heroine) copper pot stills with hotplates were acquired. The twin stills were unpacked and named themselves, as they look exactly like Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee. Their taller and more elegant companion was obviously Alice. All three characters appear in Lewis Carroll’s Alice Through The Looking Glass, which he wrote in Guildford. Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee are the perfect size for developing new gins and Alice is the still we use for Small Batch and Limited Edition gin making.
For our Vermouth we purchased a dedicated 20 litre copper pot still. Her name is Wendy and she is a darling. JM Barrie used to take holidays in the village of Shere in Surrey and of course Wendy Darling was a key character in his book, Peter Pan. We use Wendy to create the wonderful wormwood spirit that is then blended with fine English wine to make Chimes English Extra Dry Vermouth.