In high spirits – Natural Distilling Co launches with hemp gin and vodka
Hemp is the multipurpose ingredient we’ve always needed. While everyone has been distracted by one controversial purpose in particular, innovators have been using the leafy plant in numerous ways – as a clothing material, in beauty products and in life-changing medical treatments. It was during his time working in the medical cannabis industry that Rhys Staley realised he could combine his expertise on hemp with his passion for DIY distilling. Not too much later, Rhys started working on Natural Distilling Co and now it has launched with two bespoke hemp-flavoured spirits.
The term “humble beginnings” gets thrown around a lot, but when a business starts with a 63-year old dairy vat in a farm shed we think it’s appropriate – this is how Rhys Staley’s first batch of spirits was distilled. Things have changed a lot since then, but Natural Distilling Co has never strayed too far from its grass-roots start, primarily due to its focus on community and its commitment to producing locally in Gippsland, Victoria. When the federal government legalised hemp crop production in 2017, it allowed Rhys to grow on his own farm where he could sustainably cultivate his hemp’s ultra-rich citrus profile. The distinctive aromatic and flavour qualities of the cannabis sativa plant have become Natural Distilling Co’s signature.
While you won’t get high from these hemp spirits, you will be elated by their flavour. Natural Distilling Co’s hemp gin offers notes of fresh mandarin and lime with a playful, spicy finish – perfect mixed with a fizzy tonic. Meanwhile, their hemp vodka serves up crisp notes of mandarin and lemongrass with a soft mid-palate finish – delicious with a dash of soda. Also on the cards for a future release is hemp rum which should add a depth of flavour to the collection for those who prefer their spirits on the darker side – hemp rum and Coke anyone?
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