Val, Nick, Chris and Walter founded Hepple in 2014 bringing their expertise as a celebrated foraging chef, a legendary bartender, a precision distiller, and an ecologically-minded farmer to bring you some of the best liquids on the market to add to your spirits cabinets.
We caught up with the precision distiller Chris Garden who is the head distiller at Hepple to ask him a few questions about the company
Our distillery sits at the foot of the wild moors on the Hepple estate. The ethos of the estate is to restore nature to its original and powerful best. Wetlands have been created to aid and encourage wildlife. Fences have been removed to allow ponies and native cattle to roam free. Rare birds call Hepple home and rear their young here. Juniper trees have been planted in their hundreds next to their ancient relatives.
We want to be as sustainable as possible and we have a reed bed that deals with the distillery waste, we use hydrogenated vegetable oil as a fuel source, HVO has up to 90% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions versus diesel. We have introduced a bulk gin delivery system which over the last 2 years saved over 10,000 bottles being produced.
Tell us a bit about the manufacturing process of one of the Hepple spirits.
At Hepple Spirits we make our gin differently from all other distilleries using cutting edge technology that combines the use of copper pot and vacuum distillation with supercritical extraction. This equipment allows us to capture the full breadth and depth of flavour of our botanicals but specifically focusing on juniper. We grow and harvest our own green juniper, juniper picked before it matures into the purple coloured berry that we all know and love. Distilled through the vacuum still we capture its freshness as we do with the other Hepple harvested botanicals including douglas fir, bog myrtle, lovage and blackcurrant leaves.
Organic juniper is subjected to extreme pressure in the supercritical column and the absolute of juniper is extracted, this has flavours that cannot be obtained through distillation alone and gives our gin a real depth of flavour. Over all we have a juniper forward gin that is well balanced and bursting with flavours that linger on the palate.
Which is your favourite Hepple Spirit and what is your favourite way of serving it?
I love a gin martini, preferably made by Nick Strangeway up the Hepple moor looking across the countryside with a twist of lemon.
Valentine Warner and Hepple Gin are part of the team behind of our Late Summer Wild Summer Feast this September at The Thomas Cubitt. Join us and enjoy a Hepple cocktail on arrival.Book NowFind Out More