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November 28, 2019
Commerce

You can never never have enough gin or enough gin awards

South Australian distillery Never Never Distilling Co. has double tapped 2019, winning Best Gin at the Australian Gin Awards in Sydney and best packaging at the Drink Easy Awards in Melbourne. Boom.

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  • Words: Josh Fanning
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With close to a billion* Australian gins to choose from in 2019, it’s actually very helpful that some fine (and brave) people out there are willing to wade into the middle of this juniper-soaked pool and put their livers on the line and taste them all so we don’t have to.

But a new list has emerged this year, really with just one gin on it – South Australia’s Never Never Distilling Co.’s Southern Strength Gin. It’s the best according to the International Best Gin awards held in London and it’s the best gin across all categories according to the Australian Gin competition held in Sydney this week. 

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In Sydney the judges agreed that the gin was “immediately delicious” commenting that it was “complex and delicate at the same time.”

And hey, we’re sure that another criteria – does it provide the right kinda buzz – was ticked off on the score sheet, too.

Since launch, this brand and product has been an absolute standout for us at CityMag. It’s become increasingly difficult to choose a gin off the back bars of our favourite drink huts around town lately, as they become increasingly cluttered with local, quality gin. And yet Never Never’s tall, sleek and idiosyncratic bottle and label stands out on the shelf.

The label for Never Never’s first release – the Triple Juniper Gin – is beautifully detailed and features artwork by Kerri Wright. This photo: Sam Roberts

Never Never’s ‘Easy on the Eyes’-awarded Triple Juniper Gin. This image: Meaghan Coles

 

And that stand out factor was also awarded at the recent, inaugural Drink Easy awards in Melbourne, where Adelaide design firm Peculiar Familia was awarded best label design, the ‘Easy on the Eye’ award for their work on the Triple Juniper gin bottle.

“It’s been an incredible year for us,” says Brand Director of Never Never, Sean Baxter, “we have worked hard to take our range of gins to the world so to be appreciated in our home market as well is incredibly rewarding.

“We couldn’t be prouder of Peculiar Familia for taking out the first-ever ‘Easy on the Eye’ Label Award and couldn’t possibly capture the depth of what this work and our ongoing collaboration with Carlo Jensen means to the Never Never team.”

Tim Boast, Head Distiller at Never Never, feels that focusing on quality, consistency and innovation, while paying homage to traditional flavour, is what has contributed to the brand’s success at award events.

“We enter awards not just for validation, but also for independent feedback,” says Tim. “It’s this consistency that is so crucial in making a quality, successful product.”

The culmination of awards for Never Never marks an incredible year for the small distillery, which has been quickly gaining momentum within the rapidly expanding Australian gin industry.

It has been a meteoric rise for the three mates who in 2017 began distilling bold and distinctive Australian spirits in the back of Big Shed Brewing in Royal Park, South Australia.

“When we started our distillery, we wanted to make waves with a modern take on the classic London Dry style,” says Sean, “but we never thought that we would have such a big impact in the short time that we have been in operation.”

“It’s great to see juniper back in the conversation when it comes to Australian gin, it shows a massive swing back to the characteristics that gin is all about; bold, intense and juniper-forward.”

Never Never Distilling Co. is currently building its brand new distillery in McLaren Vale, slated to open in January 2020. You can bet your last sip of award-winning gin that we’ll have the scoop on that project when it’s finished for you.

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