A new craft gin distillery has opened in Sydney and its first batch was snapped up on Australia’s crowdfunding platform, Pozible. Poor Toms Gin, Sydney’s only distillery dedicated purely to making gin, has just begun production in Marrickville. The young business raised $25,000 in one day. It has released its second batch through the platform to keep up with demand, and have begun bottling and labeling earlier than planned.
“Craft spirits have always done really well on Pozible, but even so, it’s rare to see a campaign hit its target as quickly as Poor Toms did!”
Poor Toms Gin co-founder, Jesse Kennedy explained:
“We were really shocked by how quickly people pledged. We had to apologise to those who missed out on a first-batch bottle. We scrambled to make the second batch available, as part of our ‘First Release’. The gin is exclusively available on Pozible for the next 17 days, and it could be some time before people see it in their local bars and bottle shops.”
Kennedy founded Poor Toms with his housemate Griffin Blumer. Kennedy was sick of his job working for a merchant bank in the city, it was his idea to turn their kitchen table hobby into a full time job. The pair invited a veteran gin maker, Marcel Thompson, to get involved, ordered a still from Germany, and rented a warehouse in Marrickville in Sydney’s Inner West. He shared:
“Having this new craft distillery with a state of the art German copper still, matched with the pedigree of our Chief Gin Geek, Marcel Thompson, is a really exciting combination. Marcel was distilling for big gin brands in New Zealand in the 80s – before we were born! At first he was worried about our crazy ideas, but I think we’ve achieved a good balance between old and new.”
Poor Toms Sydney Dry Gin is unlike any gin available in Australia. Blumer and Kennedy wanted to make something that was distinctively Sydney but also that responded to a growing national interest in local craft spirits. The gin is made from high quality Australian wheat spirit distilled with ten botanicals, including fresh green apple, native strawberry gum, and chamomile. The batches are extremely limited, with only 300 bottles per run.
“Our copper still has some unique innovations, a dephlegmator, a spherical hat, a water heating jacket, and 3-plate rectification column. All of these technologies combined allow us to be really accurate with our distilling, and to produce a smooth and bright flavour. Our ingredients give the gin a fresh, floral, delicate-fruit aroma. Our small scale means we don’t have to please everyone; we can make something that isn’t just another conservative London Dry Gin. We see Sydney, particularly the Inner West, as this bold and irreverent place. We wanted to make a gin with a lot of flavor, that’s as bold as the city is.
“We’ve tried to stay focused on the fundamentals of good gin making and really perfect our first product. If things go well, and we can get a bit of momentum, we’ll start mucking around with some different gin variations, perhaps even open a little tasting bar in our warehouse. But for now, we’re concentrating on getting one product right. We’ll just be happy to see people around Sydney and Australia enjoying our gin.”
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