It’s a tale that goes like this…
A scene reminiscent of mid 19th Century South Africa, as an imposing steam train pulls into Bosman’s Siding (the former name for Bosman’s Crossing on Distillery Road) bootleggers roll and load barrels onto the vessel in the shadows of night, ready for sale. This visualization plays on many fascinating elements in SA’s liquor history. Firstly, the name; Distillery Road owes its heritage to Daniel Bosman, for it is he – albeit a brandy distiller – who was one of the first referenced career-distillers written about in Stellenbosch history books. Next, enter the bootleggers; their role in our illicit past was a call-to-arms against hefty taxes. Often brandy would be sold on illegally so no tax could be incurred, and this meant men working at night in a cloak of darkness to stealthily load trains as quickly as possible. As the bootleggers work, two parrots seem to have taken advantage of the train’s forbidden fruit – another reference to the place Autograph’s delicious new gin takes its name from. Located beneath the Papegaaiberg, Distillery Road’s backdrop was home to an old military tradition. Soldiers would place ceramic parrots on poles and use them as target practice and the Papegaaiberg (Parrot Mountain) became a means to stop any bullets from going astray. The parrots are also a testament to the gin still itself, as the end part of the distillation apparatus on most stills is called a parrot.
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This is what you can expect from every sip of Distillery Road, produced and distilled at the Autograph Distillery…
A modern gin for the contemporary gin drinker, Distillery Road, is a wonderful blend of old and new; “think a contemporary taste created with the London dry method’ says Autograph distiller Matt Beech.
This spirit leads with top notes of lime and coriander on the nose, following on the palate with distinct warmth (thanks to cracked black pepper) melding with ginger to create a warm rounded mouthfeel. The mid-palate lingers with the warmth of black pepper allowing the more subtle notes to sink into your palate. These more delicate notes have perfumed strains of fynbos such as Confetti Bush and Lemon Pelargonium. Finally, this gentle spicy gin rounds off with the root base of Angelica which carries it through to the finish.