Meet: Duck and Crutch
This month we're getting to know George and Hollie, founders of Duck and Crutch Gin...
Duck and Crutch is a ridiculously small gin distillery based out of a garden shed in the middle of Kensington. It was founded by girlfriend / boyfriend team Hollie and George. Their gin is a very high quality (and delicious) spirit made using traditional techniques in a really unique and beautiful bottle that pays homage to it’s Kensington roots.
When and how did you start Duck and Crutch?
G&H: The idea was born at the end of 2016. We went on a distilling experience at the City of London distillery for Hollie’s 27th Birthday and fell in love with it - which is what started the ‘grass is greener’ type thinking. We recklessly bought the shed and our 5l litre still, Bunny, and started blindly experimenting with vodka and different combinations of botanicals. It kind of grew organically from there as a hobby until we started making gin that was actually nice, and realised the commercial potential.
What do you love most about your job, and what is the most challenging part?
G: For me, it has to be the distilling, and spending some quality time in the shed - it is every mans dream.
H: From my side it was definitely creating the brand and being able to add a real personal touch to all elements of the design.
G: The most challenging part is space… Our distillery is smaller than a double bed. It is pretty ridiculous running a commercial operation from a shed, but it is all part of the fun and offers some spectacular photo opportunities.
Where do you go to get inspiration?
H: The design was largely inspired by the formality and elegance of Kensington Architecture and interiors, in particular the traditional Kensington floor tiles and their laying patterns (which feature heavily on the bottle and brand).
G: We also love Indian food, which was some inspiration behind our recipe, using Darjeeling tea and having a spice element to our gin.
What's been the most memorable part of the journey so far?
G&H: Things hit home when we received our first delivery of bottles - a pallet of 650 bottles, that weighed over half a tonne. Was a memorable feeling of overwhelming excitement and trepidation… a sort of ‘what on earth are we doing’ type feeling.
What food could you not live without?
H: Curry. We go mad for the stuff - we are going to India later in the year to visit tea plantations and spice fields, and to get a better understanding of spice combinations… possibly the makings of a cheeky limited edition catch.
Do you have a favourite food memory?
G: Mange tout from my parents garden eaten straight off the plant whilst having a kickabout with my brother.
H: ‘Proppa northern’ fish and chips from “chip shop Granny’s” shop.
Who would you invite round as a special dinner party guest?
H: It has to be David Attenborough, we reckon we could winkle out a wicked side after a couple of Duck and Crutch’s.
G: He would have some epic stories, and would certainly be polite about Hollie’s cooking… Which is easier said than done.
What do you want from the bar?
G: A Negroni - easy on the Campari, heavy handed on the gin.
See more from Duck and Crutch here.