THE SPICE ROUTE
The mysterious, ancient spice route… How much is myth and how much fact? All we know for sure is that for centuries this fabled trail inspired the intrepid and the bold, luring them eastward with the promise of a fragrant, priceless bounty.
Like those explorers of old, we too have ventured far – to seek out the exotic spices and botanicals to create Opihr Oriental Spiced Gin.
Join us on that journey.
Our First Port Of Call, The Isle Of Malacca...
We begin our quest on a small Malaysian island in search of the mysterious and darkly piquant cubeb peppers.
Used in treating many ailments, cubebs are reputed to be an aphrodisiac, to have magical powers – and to be helpful in warding off demons too. All very good reasons to bring their spiced heat to our fabulous gin.
Then, To India
In India’s south-east coast in Malabar we find the earthly paradise of Kerala. Here we gather fragrant cardamom and Tellicherry black peppers, the world’s finest – also known as the King of Spices or Black Gold.
With over 10,000 festivals a year, Kerala is clearly the home of a good party. A jumbo must-see here is elephant polo. It’s said if you dream you’re riding an elephant, you’re a born leader. Or maybe you just really like elephants.
The Major Leg, To Asia Minor...
We make the long sea journey from India to Turkey for its earthy, spicy cumin seeds – and the distinctive nutty peppery note they bring to Opihr Oriental Spiced Gin.
We aren’t the only travellers here: many spices cover thousands of miles too – across land by camel and elephant (dream on!) or over water to reach the spice markets, where we join in the bidding wars.
We Reach Venice
Here, where we load our perfumed cargo of precious juniper, whose distinctive peppery bite lends gin its characteristic taste.
This floating city is a miraculous illusion built on over 100 submerged islands. It was also home to the explorer’s explorer, a certain Marco Polo – the guy who’s been there, done that and, according to legend, discovered the t-shirt with a smart collar.
We Cross The Mediterranean
We next set sail for far Morocco – and the fresh, zesty note that its famous coriander lends our gin.
Crossing the Mediterranean wasn’t always a pleasure cruise. Morocco was once one of the Barbary States, home to the pirates who pillaged trade ships in the 17th and 18th centuries, and invented eye-patches, parrots and hooks for hands.
An Iberian Interlude...
We pause to load Spanish oranges, prized for the fragrance of their peel and the balancing sweetness this lends the spices.
They give us their oranges, we give them something even better: gin. Yes, Spain is now Europe’s largest premium gin market by some way – and growing.
Next and final stop: ENGLAND.
Welcome To The Journey's End
Here we are – home sweet, fragrant, peppery, zesty home. After our long journey, our precious freight has landed.
Here at England’s oldest gin distillery, our Master Distiller adds the exotic spices and botanicals we have gathered to the copper pot still and creates Opihr, a unique gin with citrus notes balanced with earthy aromatics and warm, soft spices.