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Delectable Distilling: The Gin Distilling Process

by Kaitlin Graham 05 Mar 2024

Gin is a spirit made with juniper berries. It has to have at least 40% alcohol to be officially classified as gin. Gin distillers are artisans and take care in their distillation methods. 

Gin Distillery

How is Gin Made?

The first step in making gin is the fermentation process. The fermentation process creates the base for any spirit, and involves using a mixture of grains, fruits, and vegetables. In gin making, juniper berries are added to give the elixir a woody, sweet flavor. 

Once it’s fermented, the mixture turns into ethanol. The liquid ethanol is filtered out of the mixture, leaving distillers with a clear, clean spirit. 

After the gin is strained, the distilling process can officially begin. Distillation clarifies the alcohol through heating and vaporising. When the vapours condense back to their liquid state, the gin is more pure and more alcoholic. This is because any impure ingredients evaporate into the air and out of the liquid. Depending on the distiller, this process may be repeated. 

Next, water is added to the ethanol to bring the pure alcohol to the desired alcohol by volume (ABV) level. Then, the gin is bottled and ready to go.

How is Gin Distilled?

There are three main ways that distillers go about vaporising their gin: steeping, vapour infusion, and vacuum distillation. When using the steeping technique, the distiller mixes ethanol with the botanicals in a pot still. A pot still is a metal container that is situated over a heat source - think oversized stove. As it’s heated, the botanicals seep into the ethanol. 

The vapour infusion technique involves hanging a basket of botanicals over the spirit in the pot still. Through the heat, the spirit vapours rise to the botanicals, and they combine as they reliquefy. 

The vacuum distillation process involves creating a low-pressure environment to release vapours without intense heat. 

Each distiller perfects their own process, and some even combine techniques to create unique essences. No matter what the process entails, the distillation process results in a strong spirit with a fruity taste.

Discover how Monkey Hanger gin is distilled here.




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