Ipswich distiller mixes up new gin

You may not typically drink the stuff, but you might want to give the uniquely Ipswich gin or brandy by Imbibis a go.

Distiller Jason Hannay and his wife Maree, have launched Imbibis which makes boutique artisan spirits out of the old Warrego Winery building in Haigslea.

They are currently selling their first gin and also a limited release of Shiraz brandy.

It the only local gin in the market and Mr Hannay describes the flavour as generous.

“The aroma is recognisable as gin due to the juniper influence, but complex as well,” he said.

“It smells enticing.

It’s a drink that can be embraced by imbibers everywhere either mixed with a quality tonic or on its own.

“The flavour is led by juniper and citrus, but meanders through to the florals of lavender, callistemon, and galangal,” he said.

“The lemon myrtle gives mid-palate freshness, and then through to the spicy long finish of cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, and star anise.

“The palate is silky smooth from the use of South-East Queensland grapes as the base alcohol.”

Everything from the contents of the bottles, to the labels, casks and cartons have all been sourced  from South-East Queensland.

Mr Hannay is a wine maker by trade but decided to start his own distillery.

“I have made everything from scratch,” he said.

“Making alcohol is time consuming and I have been working on this one for two-and-a-half years to use in this brandy and gin.

“When you start the alcohol is at 10 per cent.

“After a number of distillation runs you need to get it up to 90 per cent.

“That is when I add in the botanical mix for the flavour.”

Some of the botanical elements Mr Hannay grows himself such as the lemon myrtle.

Ingredients like the certified organic galangal are bought with the callistemon flower and bottle brush foraged locally.

Making high-quality gin with a unique flavour is Mr Hannay’s goal.

While craft spirits are evolving and craft distilleries are popping up, Mr Hannay said there is nothing else out there that tastes like Imbibis.

“It’s like no other gin on the market,” he said.

Mr and Mrs Hannay came up with their business name while doing what they love best.

“Imbibis is a derivative of the latin imbibe which means to drink,” he said.

“We like to imbibe, to enjoy a drink and be merry.

“We googled it and no one else was using it so we thought that’s us, that will be our brand.”

When not bottling gin, Mr Hannay is on the road letting bottle shops and bars know about his new product.

“You can buy our gin or brandy at boutique bottle shops such as the Wine Emporium at Tenneriffe or at TB’s Wine+Beer at Rosalie,” he said.

“Locally we are sold at Ballistic Springfield Brewery and the Sundowner Saloon.

“I hope to expand and form some partnerships with other local businesses.”

Orders can be made online at their website and they are open by appointment only.

Mr Hannay suggests the best way to enjoy his gin is in a cold glass, neat with some ice.

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