Beefeater Gin is a brand of gin owned by Pernod Ricard and bottled and distributed in the United Kingdom, by the company of James Burrough. Beefeater remained in the Burrough’s family control until 1987. It is a 47% alcohol product (94 proof) in the US, and a 40% alcohol product (80 proof) elsewhere in the world (including the UK) (note proof is calculated differently in the US from elsewhere).
The name refers to the Yeomen Warders who are the ceremonial guards of the Tower of London.
This gin is distilled from “100% grain spirit”. The manufacturer has been in business since 1863 and is currently located in Kennington, London.
According to the Beefeater website, Beefeater Gin contains nine different botanicals: juniper, angelica root, angelica seeds, coriander seeds, liquorice, almonds, orris root, seville oranges, and lemon peel. Unique to Beefeater’s production is the steeping of the peel of lemons and Seville oranges, whole juniper berries and other natural botanicals for a full 24 hours prior to distillation. This long process allows for a full extraction of flavour from the botanicals, capturing a wide range of volatile oils. The distillation itself takes around eight hours to complete, overseen by master distiller Desmond Payne – with the spirit then taken to Scotland where it is blended and bottled at 40% ABV.
47% ABV is common in the USA.
A super premium version of Beefeater was launched in Syon House on 30 October 2009. Beefeater ’24’ with its additional botanicals of Chinese Green tea and rare Japanese Sencha was the creation of master distiller Desmond Payne.
Beefeater is exported to over 100 countries across the globe, with annual sales of over 2.3 million nine-litre cases. There are fewer than 10 employees at the Kennington Distillery in London.