English whisky? Something about those two words tied together sounds unnatural. Much like English wine, it’s not something we’re accustomed to hearing. Scotch and Bourbon, even Japanese whisky, have dominated the market for years – centuries even. But, Circumstance Distillery in Whitehall has joined an emerging English whisky market with its recent release.
Circumstance Distillery has distilled the first whisky in Bristol for 80 years; the last distillery was destroyed during the Second World War. This inaugural whisky is single grain from malted and unmalted barley, matured in ex-bourbon cask for 37 months. Bristolians will love to hear that it has “aromas of scrumpy cider.” As well as a “hay-like sweetness with cream soda and delicate spice on the palate with a zesty finish.”
They produced only a small batch, 500 bottles, which are unfortunately now sold-out. If you still want to sample some, however, then worry not. A number of bottles have been distributed to some of Bristol’s best bars and restaurants. Included are some of favourites, such as Root, Hyde & Co, Bravas, Old Bookshop, The Scrandit, KASK Wine and many more. All locations can be found here.
“There’s a whole range of emotions, we’re just excited to finally share it with people,” said Steph Smith, Operations Manager for Circumstance Distillery. “We hope to be innovative and drive English whisky forward, but really we’re just focusing on the liquid.”
In the past, Circumstance Distillery has also produced organic vodka, white rum and a selection of grain spirits. But this latest offering is very much a passion project to make an accessible and modern English whisky. The small team of seven also make a range of botanical gins as Psychopomp Microdistillery.
A completely carbon neutral distillery, Circumstance Distillery prides itself on a dedication towards sustainability too. From in-store bottle refills to using 100% organic British wheat, every action made tries to make as little impact on the planet as possible.
This Saturday (September 10) Circumstance Distillery will be opening the distillery doors for a free 4th birthday party. Expect flowing drinks, Indonesian street food, music from DJ Suzi P, and distillery tours. To find out more head here.