West Coast Messenger 6 October 2021

Page 9


The West Coast Messenger

Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Mountains meet rainforest – Reefton gin and snow


eefton Distilling Co, producers of New Zealand's fastest growing premium gin, continue to surprise with their innovation and entrepreneurial spirit. Having already created a range of international award-winning spirits and liqueurs, they have now crafted a 'first in New Zealand' gin made from locally foraged, freshly fallen snow. While many would see the West Coast's high rainfall as a negative, founder and chief executive Patsy Bass, had always believed that this pristine water source had the potential to be the region's new gold. While rain is abundant in the rainforests surrounding Reefton, snow is rare. Setting out to capture Reefton transformed by a blanket of pure white on camera, the opportunity to also capture the soft powder snow; this frozen rain, in a bottle became Patsy and her team's quest. But how do you capture and bottle an element as ethereal as snow? Distiller Beth Scott explains that it was "that piney, spicy scent of snow-laden branches, with an added layer of sweet, clear freshness". "Falling snow captures the volatile organic compounds in the surrounding air and environment, and so becomes a composition and reflection of the local landscape." Waiting for just the right moment to release this first in New Zealand product, this limited edition, Little Biddy Gin Snow will be released in 2022, however a teaser is included in the Reefton Distilling Co Christmas advent calendar, due for release next month. Made from locally foraged fresh snow, native manuka, alpine lavender, peppermint and lime, which combined

PICTURE: Supplied

with the lush native rainforests, clean mountain air and cool swift rivers of the West Coast landscape, deliver this tantalising new gin. Equally at home on the Christmas table or Après Ski, this limited release is expected to sell out swiftly. This is a vibrant and refreshing gin, which opens with clear sweetness from the alpine lavender, like the promise of snow in the air. Followed by a bloom of freshness, with top notes of bright lime and green peppercorns for a dry mineral finish. The team believe "It's like melting snow in your mouth." Each bottle of Little Biddy Gin - Snow, will be presented in a gift box made locally on the West Coast. Available in 2022 while stocks last from www.reeftondistilingco. com and select liquor stores throughout New Zealand. RRP $97.99 Reefton Distilling Co is a modern distillery in an age-old town, here they produce a range of small batch distilled premium spirits including Little Biddy Gin, Wild Rain Vodka and Reefton

Distilling Co. Liqueurs. At the cutting edge of distillation in New Zealand, their products continue to win both national and international acclaim. Taking their inspiration from Reefton's rich history of adventure, innovation, and gold. They see the town as the perfect place for making fresh, handcrafted spirits. With dense green rainforests on their doorstep providing ideal foraging environments, rich with botanical gold, Reefton Distilling Co have made a commitment to use as much locally foraged and gathered ingredients as possible. Their Little Biddy Gin range includes ingredients they go into the forest and select on the morning they distil. This, along with a pristine water (or in this case snowfall) from local natural sources, each with its own unique characteristics, contributes to the distinctiveness of the spirits they produce, ensuring that each product has its own unique West Coast flavour. Reefton Distilling Co has always been about doing the right thing, for the right reasons, to help the West Coast economy and to create jobs in Reefton. Founder and chief executive Patsy Bass said, "This is much bigger than a distillery. It is about regenerating a town." Their products are available at their cellar door, through their website www. reeftondistillingco.com and at selected liquor outlets, premium specialty stores, restaurants and bars nationwide. Their Little Biddy Gin is also available for home delivery throughout Australia via www.reeftondistillingco.com.au The company also offers distillery tours and tastings from their Smith Street distillery in Reefton, bookings via the website are recommended.

Westland District Council says no to 3 waters reform WESTLAND District Council firmly rejected reforming the structure of three waters in Westland at their meeting last week, based on the current information available from Government, but left the door open to further consideration of the matter if more specific information becomes available. All councils around New Zealand had eight weeks to consider the proposal, the effects on their business and communities and provide feedback to the Government about their proposal. "When we spoke to our community, the majority was very strongly against the three waters reform, and we will be communicating that to the Government," Westland Mayor Bruce Smith said. "The key reasons that people want us to opt-out are:  Submitters wanted three water services managed, built and operated locally, by people who understand the area.  Submitters don't believe the reform will improve efficiencies.  There were concerns their community won't have a strong democratic say in how their three waters services are provided.  The community is concerned their rates will fund upgrades in other areas. "As councillors, we have made a commitment to listen to the community and take their lead in things that matter to them. The amount of feedback that we received about the reform shows that this is something that matters very much to Westland residents. "Alongside that, councillors are not convinced that the proposed model provides the best outcomes for our district and this was why we unanimously voted for Cr Martin's notice of motion against opting-in. We know that neither the council nor the community have enough information to make a fully informed decision based on what the Government has told us so far. "Our analysis has not proved the benefits that the Government claims and we need more detail before we could confidently say that this proposal would benefit our communities. Based on that, we would seek to opt-out of the reform if a decision is required by the Government."

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