Grandma's 'bootleg concoction' inspired new gin
A FAMILY cumquat tree has driven the inspiration behind a new product from popular Byron Bay brand Brookie's Gin.
The new cumquat gin is inspired by Shirley Brook, grandmother of Brookie's distiller Eddie Brook, who used to own a cumquat tree in her front yard.
Shirley's daughter Pam Brook, said that their old cumquat tree and subsequent gin used to play a large factor in her childhood and it was a special family moment to see it recreated.
"Growing up, we had a cumquat tree in our front yard and my job as a three-year-old was to pick each cumquat, prick each one and pop them in a jar. This sometimes took me days," she said.
"Upon reflection, I realise it was a genius way to keep a child occupied, but it remains a very fond memory of mine.
"I remember a large volume of gin would then appear in the house to make Shirl's bootleg gin … don't ask me where she got it from. She would then patiently steep these cumquats in gin, waiting until the clear liquid turned golden. She was a true creative and innovator, and her 'concoction' has been perfectly recreated by my son, Eddie. I couldn't be prouder."
Mr Booth said that Shirley's own cumquat gin used to be a regular feature at parties which inspired this new release from Brookie's.
"This gin is an ode to my grandma who was known to her friends and family as 'Shirl the Pearl'. My mum (Pam) would tell me stories of Shirl's notorious cumquat gin that was generously cracked open for her friends, or at various cocktail and dinner parties. This spirit is truly special and I'm sure Shirl would approve."