The proprietors of Stone Pine Distillery, Bev and Ian Glen, have their roots in the Scottish brewing and distilling industry. Based in Bathurst, 200km west of Sydney over the Blue Mountains, Ian was originally from that area but moved overseas at a young age. As a family though he and Bev moved to Australia, complete with children and dog, in 2006 with the aim of establishing Bathurst’s first microdistillery.
Bev used to run pubs in Edinburgh, while Ian is a biochemist and holds a Post-Graduate Diploma in Brewing & Distilling. He has spent his entire career in the malting, brewing and distilling industry, so knows his stuff.
They run their small distillery from their historic homestead of ‘Merembra’, which dates back to the 1840s and was for a time, in the late 19th century, known as The Barley Mow Hotel. After a 140 year absence, the property is once again host to a liquor licence, a long time between drinks! The stone pine tree, situated on the front lawn of the property, is thought to be of an age with the house, and of course is the distillery’s namesake.
Despite their relatively modest surroundings Stone Pine’s gin is popular far and wide and (like the previous Gin of the Month, Loch) was featured at the Noma pop-up restaurant in Sydney, where access to tables are going for thousands of dollars.
The gin you’ll be receiving is not the gin they had a Noma, which was a special Orange Blossom variety using ingredients from their own land. That’s the great thing about Ian. Being the scientist he is, he’s always experimenting. He does this by finding potential new botanicals on their land and trialling them new gin varieties. He’s currently working on an autumnal version using a secret ingredient, but as he admits his experiments fail just as much as they succeed.
Either way, this simple yet exquisite gin will be another perfect addition to your gin collection.