Some very local ingredients nabbed a first-place win for a Sunshine Coast-crafted gin in a national competition.
A limited edition gin created by Bruinwood Estate Distillery was not only named for the Sunshine Coast Botanical Garden, but crafted with ingredients taken from the garden’s grounds. The Roberts Creek business earned a gold medal in the Excellence in Terroir category of the 2021 Canadian Artisan Spirit Competition.
Much like how the term ‘terroir’ is used in wine to indicate how a product is impacted by its local terrain, the category recognizes a product that is reflective of the place it was made. Proprietor Jeff Barringer told Coast Reporter that with the exception of the juniper, all of the ingredients for the gin’s flavour were sourced from the gardens. From the hemlock and spruce tips to the traditional herbs, licorice fern and elderflower, it was all homegrown.
The Botanical Garden Gin was created in an effort to raise funds for its namesake, since the pandemic cancelled its annual fundraiser. Bruinwood took up the cause, and created 100 bottles of the limited edition gin for $100 each – which sold out in a matter of days. The profits, around $5,000, went to the gardens. (Bruinwood also made hand sanitizer to help with pandemic safety measures.)
Barringer said the gold award felt like another reward for those who bought into the fundraising efforts, acknowledging the high price of each bottle. He said Bruinwood loves working with the Botanical Garden, and they were happy to help.
Bruinwood also took home a silver for their Plains Vodka and two bronzes – one for their Quince Liqueur, and another for their Rhubarb Gin.