We recently summed up what 2017 taught us on our social media channels, but it got us seriously thinking: 2017 was a year of change, but it was by far our best year yet!
We moved into our new distillery just outside Cheltenham in early 2017, which meant that we could produce more, expand our team and products and offer tours. This was pretty major, and slightly daunting, considering we were used to distilling in one very small room at the end of our parents Brewery. We jumped straight in at the deep end, investing heavily in new equipment but it set us up well for the year and allowed us to not only improve the volume that we were making but also the quality. Although by far the toughest few months since we started, moving was the best thing we did, and we would like once again to thank everyone who helped us to get here.
We have hosted numerous tours and private events in the distillery over the year and we hope to host many more in 2018. It taught us a couple of things; people are really interested in gin, and we really love talking about it! We’ve had hen do’s, work parties and family reunions and they have all been a roaring success! We have absolutely loved showing people how our unique distillery works. Everyone is always so interested in hearing that we do everything by hand and we start the process from scratch (admittedly, they are also very interested about coming up to our tasting room!). We have also had many parties and events in the distillery including our summer pizza evening, ‘L’etape de Brewery’ for the Tour of Britain and our Christmas drinks which rounded off the year in style. It has been so nice to have a big enough space that people can come in and enjoy a G&T or two whilst listening to local bands and enjoying some delicious grub! We hope to welcome many more of you into the distillery in 2018 and will keep you posted about up-coming events!
In April we launched the highly anticipated and second of our limited edition gins: Lemon & Rosemary. After the Spring edition we released our Summer gin: Strawberry & Black Pepper, followed by our Autumn edition: Apple, Blackberry & Cardamom, which completed the four-seasons (our Winter edition: Cranberry & Clementine, was our first release in 2016). It wasn’t easy picking the final flavours, although we loved the process of trying an array of combinations, but we wanted to find flavours that not only complemented each other but fitted into the time of year; because, we think gin should be enjoyed all year round! Our new editions to the Sibling Gin family have been so well received and we particularly love hearing how you guys have tried out the gins and the new cocktails you have come up with! Following the reviews we were getting on the seasonal gins we thought it would be a good idea to create miniature versions of the limited edition gins, so we created the ‘Gift Collection’ so that everyone could enjoy the seasons all year round. We wouldn’t have been able to do any of this had we not been able to move into the new distillery so we feel that we are heading in the right direction, slowly but surely. We are currently working on some new projects that are very exciting; we are always trying to push Sibling forward, so watch this space!
2017 also saw us bottle our 100th batch (and then some!) as well as cement our place as one of the top drinks producers in the South West, winning the gold at the ‘Taste of the West’ and Clarice and Cicely got recognised as joint ‘Young Women Entrepreneurs Of The Year’. We were also selected as the South West’s representative at the final of the Delicious Awards where we made the top ten food and drink brands, all in all a positive year for that sort of thing!
So to conclude, 2017 was all about new challenges and changes, and we got stuck in! We moved, we partied and we brought out new gin – sounds like a pretty good year to us! Importantly, it’s taught us that the sky’s the limit and we are going to keep pushing new ideas, new ventures and continue to grow in size and strength! We’d love you to continue following our journey and keep your eyes peeled for what we are getting up to in 2018!