It has always been our desire to involve the game of Rugby in our products, and our bottles already pay homage to the bold shoulders of the players and the signature horizontal stripes of the original shirts that players wore.
We have lived in Rugby all of our lives and the game is in our blood. Distilling gin in our home town is our passion but it felt like there was a piece of our story missing, we wanted our botanics to echo the story of the game in the same way that our brand does.
Founded in 1567, Rugby School is one of the oldest independent schools in Britain, and it was here that in 1823 local boy William Webb Ellis picked up a football in his arms on the school playing fields and ran with it. This significant and monumental moment in time created the game of Rugby. Our flagship 1823 London Dry Gin pays homage to that auspicious year.
Recently Rugby School made the decision to sell the turf from the original Rugby School Rugby Pitch known as ‘The Close’. This was the perfect opportunity for us to fulfil a long held ambition to include the grass in our botanicals from the pitch where William picked up the ball and ran with it.
So that is what we did!
Richard is now the proud owner of 4 fine bolts of turf from The Close that he is now tending happily in his garden at home. It’s coming along nicely as the warmer weather approaches and will be ready for harvesting soon!
We are the only small batch gin distillery whose products are made here in Rugby, Warwickshire, and now our spirit botanicals will be enhanced by the very grass that William Webb Ellis ran upon.
Rugby Distillery are now proud owners of this fantastic piece of Rugby history and this will allow us to move from 12 botanicals to our lucky 13 and the final piece of the puzzle is now in place.
All our gins distilled after 1st June will include this piece of history.
2023 will be the 200’th anniversary year of the game, and we at Rugby Distillery aim to celebrate the bi-centennial with gusto as our gin spirits are truly….
‘Crafted In The Fields’ of Rugby.