Whitley Neill is an award winning distiller and family with a fascination for crafting spirits since 1762
Meet Johnny Neill, 8th generation family member
My first experience of gin was discovering the collection of bottles sitting under the stairs at my Grandmother’s house. Being inquisitive, I was eager to learn more about this mysterious liquid that my family had been distilling since 1762.
My fascination with gin and its complex distillation process had begun; and under my Grandmother’s expert guidance, I learnt how, by simply infusing the CRISP sharpness of JUNIPER BERRIES with a variety of other flavours & aromas, the taste could change DRAMATICALLY.
And for me that was the attraction. I was like an alchemist and from that moment onwards, I was driven to create a blend of gin that captured my family’s PASSION and something altogether more EXOTIC, ENIGMATIC and MYSTERIOUS.
I distilled the tart fruit pulp to release a distinctive citrus flavour, quite unlike any other. And to reflect the role the Baobab tree played in the creation of WHITLEY NEILL, I decided to make its distinctive roots-up silhouette the symbol of our brand.
My next botanical was the Physalis Peruviana or Cape Gooseberry as it’s known in South Africa. These flavoursome bitter-sweet berries added a whole new DIMENSION to the aroma.
I then took 6 other carefully selected botanicals to create my SECRET RECIPE, but that’s a whole different story…
Whitley Neill is made from a 100% grain spirit that is steeped with botanicals prior to being distilled in a beautiful antique copper pot still called ‘Constance’ who is over 100 years old.
Only the purest water is used and each of the nine botanicals are carefully selected to ensure that they are of the highest quality. Whitley Neill’s tagline of “Crafted from the tree of life” goes a long way in describing what those botanicals might be.
Bringing together a mix of innovative botanicals like cape gooseberries and baobab fruit to its lineup, it also has other more traditional botanicals such as juniper, coriander, lemon & orange peel, angelica root, cassia bark and orris root.
The tagline also lends its cues to the attitude taken on by the creator Johnny Neill, as it reflects his fresh 21st century outlook whilst also making a reference to gin’s heritage and the London based gin distilling experience put into use at the distillery.