Those wonderful people at Beefeater sure know how to throw a party. We should know we’ve stayed up all night with them at two of their legendary 24 Hour gigs. No one could ever accuse them of scrimping at the best of times but come the launch of a brand new product, well, they put the extra into extravaganza and totally blew our minds. Alfie Allen, Jaime Winston, Jade Jagger and Nat Weller may well have been among the ‘slebs in attendance but no-one, not even a dazzling Lily Allen was going to steal the limelight away from the real star of the show – their brand new super premium gin, Beefeater 24…
Beefeater 24 is Master Distiller Desmond Payne’s baby. While he’s guarded, blended and maintained the quality of the original Beefeater recipe for more than 25 years, this is the first time he’s been asked to concoct his own gin completely from scratch. And he knew that it had to be good.
It took almost two years to perfect the recipe for Beefeater 24. And its make up is about as British as you’re likely to get. We’re talking tea as one of the main ingredients, Arts & Crafts styling for the distinctive bottle and the modern 24-hour London lifestyle mixed with an enviable history and tradition as its inspiration.
We asked Desmond Payne to give us 24 reasons why Beefeater captures the unique spirit of London.
Here’s what he had to say:
1. The Distillery
Beefeater 24 is distilled in Kennington in one of the two remaining gin distilleries in the city.
2. The Bottle
The Beefeater 24 bottle is based on the shape of a traditional London brick.
3. The Design
The floral design in the glass is inspired by the Arts & Crafts designs used by the Royal Doulton porcelain works, which were situated next to the distillery.
4. The Name
The Beefeater brand name is taken from the Beefeaters – Yeoman Warders – at the Tower of London.
As well as celebrating Beefeater Gin’s unique 24 hour steeping process, ‘24′ represents the 24- hour lifestyle of a major modern city like London.
6. London Gin
Beefeater 24 is an authentic London Gin. Many other brands of London gin are distilled in other parts of the UK and even overseas.
7. Authentic London Cut
This statement on the label refers to the process of ‘cutting’ the distillation so that we only collect the finest flavours from the ingredients, disregarding the remainder.
8. The Raven
Look through the small round panel in the embossed glass of the bottle below the label and you will see a Raven. Tradition has it that if ever the ravens leave the Tower, then the Monarchy will fall and London will go into recline.
9. The Red Base
This is inspired by the Black Prince Ruby, which takes pride of place in the centre of the State Crown.
10. The Flavour
The introduction of tea as a botanical relates to the similarities of the introduction of both gin and tea to London in the 17th century.
11. London Bars
London has the best cocktail culture in the world – ahead of New York, Tokyo and Paris. Beefeater 24 is welcomed as an exciting new gin by London’s top bartenders.
12. The Bottle Cap
The red and blue colours of the bottle cap are taken from the Yeoman Warders day uniform. Hold a bottle up against a Beefeater next time you are at the Tower to check! (Warning: you may not get the bottle back).
13-24. The 12 Botanicals
- Juniper berries from Italy
- Spicy coriander seeds from Russia and Bulgaria
- Hand-peeled Seville orange peel from Spain
- Aromatic Spanish lemon peels
- Rare Japanese Sencha tea from the slopes of Mt. Fuji.
- Liquorice root from China
- The sweet spice of angelica seeds
- Powdered Florentine orris root
- Green tea from China
- The citrus tang of grapefruit peel
- Belgian angelica root
- Bitter almonds from Spain.