Food Scene Column: Pole position for Silverstone Distillery

Hazel Roberts chats to Silverstone Distillery founder Steve Hancock about his award-winning gin and the roots of his growing success.

It was a last-minute entry of Oak Rested Gin from Silverstone Distillery that went on to win the Best Drink Product category at the Milton Keynes Food and Leisure Awards in 2021.

I caught up with founder, Steve Hancock, to find out more about this new local distillery and their special gin.

Having worked in the hospitality industry for over 15 years, Steve often dreamed about the incredible
products he wanted to make.

So, in October 2020, in the middle of a pandemic, he took his first step and opened Silverstone Distillery.

Currently the products coming out of the distillery are very much rooted in the history of Silverstone.

Their Military Gin gives a nod to the army base on which the famous Silverstone circuit is built, and the
Heritage No2 Smoked Wild Apple Vodka uses apples that grow locally in the hedgerow.

The award-winning Heritage No1 Oak Rested Gin uses wood from a 5000-year-old local oak tree in its flavour development.

The tree had been preserved all those years in peat bog but is now in the yard of a sawmill on a local
estate.

The man in charge of the sawmill had tried using chips from the tree to smoke some fish and was delighted by the peaty, citrus flavour imparted, so he contacted Steve to see if he could use it to add
flavour to a gin.

After a fair bit of experimentation, the Oak Rested Gin was born.

Things are moving fast for the new distillery with exciting collaborations coming up with a top-flight motorsport artist and product launches at both the National Trust gardens at Stowe and the British Grand Prix.

At the distillery, their Gin School is proving extremely popular, and they have added new experiences
such as Mixology and Gin Masterclasses.

Soon they will be offering their experience at some incredible new locations such as Whittlebury Park and
the new Hilton Garden Inn Silverstone.

So, as we start to put the pandemic behind us, Steve sees Silverstone Distillery having an exciting future and welcomes visitors to pop down to the distillery to see what they are all about and to try before you buy.

Visit silverstonedistillery.co.uk to find out more, buy products, check opening times, book an experience and more.

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