Back in 2014, gin was our thing. We were a budding distillery and saw the gin market had some room. So naturally, we took that notion and ran with it. Full force.
We took our passion for gin and poured it into a gin-tasting party with friends. We shared and sampled more than a dozen versions of gin and collected qualitative data. Yes, you read that right. We collected qualitative data. In worksheet form. From every person who attended. (We're awesome friends!) See the photo below. (Scientists, remember?) The bottles we compared included Bombay Sapphire, Solveig, Junipero, Hendrick’s, Beefeater, Norseman, Du Nord’s Fitzgerald Gin, No. 209, and the crowd favorite: Death’s Door out of Door County, Wisconsin. It was a tremendous night and certainly one of the bigger waypoints in Copperwing’s history.
We took the data from that gintastic party and started playing around with our own flavor combinations. Countless herbs and spices were procured. Things like juniper, caraway, frankincense, fennel, coriander, bitter orange, nutmeg, cinnamon, almond, vanilla, lemon, lime, and grapefruit peel, cardamom, cubeb, black pepper, anise, and angelica root. We made boatloads of tinctures so we could play with flavor blends. We came up with recipes and flavor fusions we liked and thought our friends would like, too, based on the data.
Ultimately, we tried the recipes via distillation for the first time in early 2017. We experimented with different techniques. We steeped. We vapor-infused. We also played with different alcohol proofs. We can experiment with everything from nearly pure ethanol to anything less, all of which have different effects on withdrawing flavor compounds from botanical ingredients during steeping or vapor infusion.
In the time between gin party and cocktail room opening, October 2014 to March 2017, we got distracted by a few other products. Whiskey and Vodskey, to name a couple. Since we were having so much fun with those, we pushed back our gin release. We wanted to get it right. And guess what? We nailed it.
Starting in May, you’ll be able to try our original Gin. It’s been our baby all these years. We’re so excited to share it with the world. It will certainly give our Vodskey a run for it’s money as our best-selling spirit. Look for a gin release event coming to your social media feeds very, very soon.