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Why Gin is Women’s Business

The production, service and communication of booze hasn’t been at the vanguard of equal opportunities. There have always been pockets of women in booze though. In the alehouses of London in the Stuart and Tudor times bar wenches commonly served men. When the Dutch King, William of Orange, took the throne of England in 1689 he brought with him some strange Dutch customs. Presumably clogs and tulips took their rightful place in Covent Garden.

But the most impactful import was legal domestic distillation, and the native Dutch juniper-based spirit, Jenever. Back then the Dutch Republic was the very centre of the world. The Dutch East India Company was in the middle of its 200-year reign as the richest and most powerful company of all time. If you stuffed a very large sock with Amazon, Tesla, Microsoft and Facebook you wouldn’t come close to the wealth and power of the Dutch East India Company. Its wealth was derived from the spice trade, sourced from all known corners of the globe. It therefore had the ability to wage war, mint money and negotiate treaties. But by far the most important gift to the world was the spreading of Jenever.

Believed to be the source of the military success of the Dutch armies (where the term Dutch courage comes from) Jenever had already achieved mythical status before it landed in the alehouses of London. Juniper is a majestic beast. There are a number of reasons why it has birthed an entire genre of spirits. It manages to be earthy, waxy, resinous, minty, citrusy, and woodsy. Depending on how it’s cultivated, where it was grown, and crucially how it is distilled, so much contrasting flavour can come out of a crop of juniper. With the legalisation of domestic distillation, Londoners took to making crude spirits at home with aplomb. Embracing the new spice du jour, they messed around with it, adding other spices found in the market to make their own distinct home blend of the spirit they started to call gin. Because distillation, like many other skills, was a domestic task the people playing around with recipes were women. It was women who refined the recipes, women who started the first ginhouses of London (and maybe a touch of prostitution on the side for those game) and women who started for the very first time in British history, started amassing their own small fortunes. Gin recipes from the time featured exotic spices, particularly exotic spices that would last a six-week voyage. The first recipes for gin look an awful lot like seventeenth century abortifacient recipes. Often with significant crossover, cloves, angelica, liquorice, cardamom. The most flavourful, bitter, floral, unusual, and hardy. Gin is, therefore, women’s business.

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Rosebery NSW 2018

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Location

85 Dunning Ave
Rosebery NSW 2018

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Distillery

Book a tour:

Wednesday - Sunday
Subject to availability

Book Tour

Bar

Come in for a drink:

Archie Rose Bar Opening Hours
Tuesday: 4pm-10pm
Wednesday & Thursday: 4pm-11:30pm
Friday & Saturday: 12pm-11.30pm
Sunday: 12pm-10pm
Monday: Closed

Cellar Door Spirit Sales: Tuesday-Sunday: 10am-10pm. Monday: Closed

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To experience this site you must be of legal drinking age in your country of residence. Please enjoy Archie Rose responsibly in countries where the consumption of alcohol is lawful, for persons who are lawfully permitted to consume alcohol. By entering this site you agree to our Terms and Conditions. Find out more at www.drinkwise.org.au. Archie Rose Distilling Co. Pty Limited Rights Reserved. Archie Rose Distilling Co. supports the Responsible Service of Alcohol. NSW Liquor Act 2007. It is against the law to sell or supply alcohol to, or to obtain alcohol on behalf of, a person under the age of 18 years. Liquor Producer Wholesaler Licence: LIQW880014624 | Liquor Hotel Licence: LIQH440018958

To experience this site you must be of legal drinking age in your country of residence. Please enjoy Archie Rose responsibly in countries where the consumption of alcohol is lawful, for persons who are lawfully permitted to consume alcohol. By entering this site you agree to our Terms and Conditions. Find out more at www.drinkwise.org.au. Archie Rose Distilling Co. Pty Limited Rights Reserved. Archie Rose Distilling Co. supports the Responsible Service of Alcohol. NSW Liquor Act 2007. It is against the law to sell or supply alcohol to, or to obtain alcohol on behalf of, a person under the age of 18 years. Liquor Producer Wholesaler Licence: LIQW880014624 | Liquor Hotel Licence: LIQH440018958