With support from Business Gateway, the makers of the first juniper-based spirit to be distilled in Aberdeen for 100 years are set to increase the production of their gin five-fold in time for the festive rush.
Ben Iravani, Josh Rennie, and Alex Lawrence are on target to raise production of Porter’s Gin from 3.3k bottles per run to 6k this month (September) before ramping up to 15k bottles in November, just a year after launching their premium gin.
Working closely with their adviser from Business Gateway Aberdeen City & Shire, the trio have continued to make an impression on the drinks industry, most recently securing their first export deal with the distribution arm of Amsterdam’s Tales & Spirits bar, voted one of the 50 best bars in the world this year. The entrepreneurs are also in talks with a national distributor in the UK.
Ben said: “Getting a new product off the ground isn’t easy but we’ve received fantastic support and advice from Business Gateway which has saved us tens of thousands of pounds in initial investment. Our adviser worked with us on business planning and strategy development and signposted us to support organisations whose help has also been invaluable. As we continue to grow we will use our adviser’s expertise and contacts to identify further opportunities to sell our gin.
“It’s been a phenomenal year so far. The Amsterdam deal is a great way to test the water in Europe and we plan to have our UK distribution deal in place before we undertake a raft of promotional activity in London in a few months’ time.”
Gordon Mackay, Business Gateway said: “In less than a year, Porter’s Gin has featured in Vogue and Glamour magazines and is sold in all Harvey Nichols UK stores and online. We’re delighted that our expert advice has helped them access a range of support, including a one to one strategy workshop from Scottish Enterprise.”
With backgrounds in mechanical engineering, law and the drinks industry, Ben, Alex and Josh had the perfect mix of skills to launch the business but needed some additional help to source specialist equipment to make their first gin.
With the help of Professor Andrew Porter of Aberdeen University – who the gin is named after – they were able to source cold-distillation equipment that allowed them to extract light refreshing flavours from 12 botanicals.
After gaining a rectifier’s license that allows them to distil part of Porter’s Gin within their award winning Aberdeen cocktail bar Orchid, the more traditional part of the gin is distilled in partnership with G&J distillers in Warrington, the world's oldest gin distillery.
Ben said: “Porter's Gin is a unique fusion of modern and traditional distillation techniques. Our gin has a unique flavour profile that has really hit the right note with every gin lover who has tasted it.”
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