In 2012, a classically trained chef from the Cordon Bleu in Paris finds something amiss in his life. He decides to make a change, leaving his home in London and moving to a distillery in the West Country. Tarquin Leadbetter is just 23.
In that year, UK’s craft gin scene is rising, with an increased appetite for small-batch, craft gins. Armed with a 0.7 litre copper pot still, a suitcase stuffed with botanicals, Tarquin makes his way to a Cornish distillery near Padstow. There, he learns how to distil, experimenting with over 100 recipes before finalising on one: 12 botanicals (roots, spices, nuts, seeds, fruits and flowers sourced from around the world and his garden). Tarquin’s gin makes its debut in July 2013 as the first product form Southwestern Distillery. In 2017, it’s crowned the “World’s Best Gin” at the 2017 San Francisco World Spirits Competition.
The self-taught distiller doesn’t stop there. He turns his attention to rum, combining his experience with distilling botanicals, and his love of experimentation and innovation.
Twin Fin is inspired by the coasts of Cornwall and the Caribbean. Cornwall’s first independent, family-run distillery in over a century perched on a windswept hilltop overlooking the wild Cornish Coast. The journey of the spirit begins in the Caribbean with the selection of rums, which then make their way to Cornwall to be blended with fruits, spices and botanicals. Two years of creative experimentation results in a family of exotic spiced and flavoured rums, packed in vibrant bottles.
Twin Fin rums are rich, smooth, refreshing and tropical. They are bold enough for cocktails and ideal for the beach.
TWIN FIN COCONUT & LYCHEE
38% Abv – 700ml
Twin Fin begins life in the warm Caribbean and then crosses the Atlantic to land on the rugged coast of Cornwall. A Jamaican pot still rum and a Dominican column still rum are blended together in a Cornish copper pot still with coconut and lychee. It is then finished with some Pedro Ximenez sherry and rested over charred oak chip. This creates a bold and bright spirit with no artificial flavours and no added sugar.
Twin Fin is rich and smooth with aromatic spice notes, a touch of exotic citrus and a light smoky finish. Its bold flavour makes it excellent for cocktails, like a summery pina colada or to add complexity to Daiquiris and tiki-style cocktails. It works equally well with lemonade, soda or tonic water, over ice. Grab a bottle and take it to the beach.
Tasting Notes: Bright and clear like the tropical seas, it has coconut sorbet notes. On the palate, the smooth and creamy sorbet flavour continues, blending with wild strawberry and melon, and juicy lychee running throughout. The finish is refreshingly crisp and tart, with aroma of wild strawberry and melon.
TWIN FIN SPICED GOLDEN RUM
38% Abv – 700ml
The Southwestern Distillery near Padstow in Cornwall have created a progressive spiced rum offering a taste of Cornwall and Caribbean. It is distilled in a Cornish copper pot still and then blended with pot-still rum from Jamaica and column-still rum from the Dominican Republic along with botanicals like vanilla and orange. It is finished with some Pedro Ximenez sherry for sweetness, and rested over charred oak chips.
The distillery’s first rum comes in a turquoise bottle and has zesty tropical notes of caramelised banana, grapefruit, orange and pineapple. It’s the perfect tropical cooler. Make a refreshing summer cocktail like a spiced mojito or add ginger beer with a squeeze of lime. Drink neat with some chocolate orange as a side, or drink with a mixer and add orange peel as a garnish.
Tasting Notes: The first sniff reveals a beautiful blend of almond and honey, with some toffee. There’s the faintest hint of Christmas pudding with orange, caramelised banana, vanilla and light spices. The palate is smooth and rich, and with a strong toffee flavour, more caramelised banana with vanilla, coffee, caramel, cinnamon and notes of nutmeg and ginger. The finish is short and smoky-sweet with an enduring hint of fruit and some bitterness.