A distillery near Salisbury has won three awards for their gin that supports endangered birds on Salisbury Plain.

Downton Distillery partnered with the Great Bustard Group to create 'Great Bustard Gin,' earlier this year. With each bottle sold, Downton Distillery gives 25 per cent of the money back to the charity for new habitat – around £10.

The gin won gold earlier this year at the 'Taste of the West Awards', but also won 'Best Contemporary Gin' at the recent 2024 Gin Guide Awards - the largest independent spirits competition in the world.

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With hundreds of entries from over 35 countries, this achievement is one that requires consistently high scores from the judges across key characteristics of the spirit.

It then won another gold as the best gin to use within a 'Martini' at the same competition.

Salisbury Journal:

More recently, the gin has won another award at the International Wine and Spirit Competition (IWSC) where just 50 golds were handed out in a field of over 1,000 gin entries.

Head distiller Hugh Anderson worked with founder David Waters to create this new gin using botanicals that these critically endangered birds forage for on Salisbury Plain.

It is a London dry gin with a citrus herbaceous profile using wild rocket, yarrow, red clover and lucerne also known as alfalfa.

Hugh said: “When creating a new product it is always a daunting process, more so when you are using botanicals that others have not used. One's greatest fear is how it will be received.

Salisbury Journal:

“It has been thrilling to watch the positive feedback on people’s faces when they hear that four of the chosen botanicals are part of the Great Bustards diet. It is a wonderful way to educate people about these birds whilst increasing public awareness of their plight.

“I will be doing an evening at the Live Escape rooms on June 14 where I will be talking about them and making some cocktails with the gin!”

You can buy bottles online through Downton Distillery, or at Regent Tailoring and Downton Brewery. The distillery has also launched a refill pack service, so you don’t need to re-buy glass bottles. Tours are available to the distillery where Hugh will teach you about the botanicals used within this gin.