Bramley and Gage is a small, family run business that is focused on making high quality, great tasting spirits, gins and liqueurs. In 2010 they launched 6 O’clock Gin. The gin is a refinement of the gin that master distiller Edward Kain had been making for many years as the base for his sloe and damson gins.
Who are you/what do you do? Hi, I’m Michael Kain. I am the Head Distiller and one of the Directors at 6 O’clock Gin.
How did you get into this line of work? My parents began the business in their South Devon kitchen back in 1988. In 2007, my sister Felicity and I took over the business when we moved to the beautiful town of Thornbury which is located on the edge of Bristol. The family has a long traditional in both the crafting (and drinking) of liqueurs and spirits, as well as in engineering, so it was really a natural choice for me to become involved in the business when my parents retired.
What inspired you to start up the business? A love of gin!
Are there any other drinks companies which have inspired/influenced you? The family business began by manufacturing fruit liqueurs created from the native hedgerow and orchard fruits that we grew on the family farm. My parents were both influence by the traditional French methods of liqueur production which are very much based on using quality fruit, treating it with respect and allowing plenty of time to truly capture its rich, natural flavours. Our passion for gin was born out of our very popular traditional Sloe and Damson Gins and it was a natural progression to create a premium London Dry Gin.
Where do you see, or hope to see, the business in 5 years time? We are very lucky to work with a great range of bars, restaurants and shops across the UK and have continued to develop the range of 6 O’clock Gin products over the past few years. This summer sees the launch of a special ‘Brunel Edition’. With the popularity of gin at an all-time high, we plan to continue making great products for discerning G&T drinkers and cocktail fans alike.
What do you think makes a great liqueur? The quality and provenance of your ingredients is vital to making great tasting products, and the skill of those who produce them is key to maintaining a consistently high quality. We have also invested in the look and feel of all of our products and believe that with its iconic Bristol Blue Glass inspired bottle 6 O’clock Gin really does stand itself apart from the competition.
A large number of drinks companies are experimenting with unusual flavours in their products. Are there any you think work well together and are there any you would like to try? Our new Brunel Edition has been created to celebrate the life and achievements of one of Bristol’s best-known residents, Isambard Kingdom Brunel. Inspired by his achievements, as well his contribution to engineering and world travel, we have introduced six new botanicals to this delicious gin; carefully balanced and lovingly distilled for a more intense flavour with citrus freshness and a dry spicy finish. We like to think that our Brunel Edition is ‘Exquisite Engineering’ – in a bottle!
What was your first drink and where were you when you had it? A sherry at Christmas!
What drink can you no longer face having had one too many? Anything with Red Bull in it… even the smell is too much for me!
What is the silliest thing you’ve done whilst drunk? Some things are best kept off of the internet… pop along to the distillery on a Friday afternoon and I might just tell!
What is the best part of your job? Working with such a wide range of people and getting to support and encourage all the members of the team is very rewarding. Being family own and totally independent means that we can all focus on creating great products and developing new and exciting ideas rather than sitting in board meetings all day long!
You are stuck on a desert island, what three things are you taking with you? 6 O’clock Gin, Dry Vermouth & a freezer. Job done!
Thanks to Michael for chatting to us.