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Behind a blue door and snuggled away in the cosy streets of West London, you’ll find a truly unexpected business called Sipsmith. Sneak in the door and you’ll find the capital’s first copper distillery for nearly 200 years. The vast copper installation, proudly named ‘Prudence’, welcomes you with bubbling, belching and finally spouting of litres of delicious, delicate alcohol. 

Sipsmith is the fruit of three lads’ hard labour; Fairfax Hall, Jared Brown and Sam Galsworthy, had each been working in the drinks industry, before deciding “to pursue our passion for beautifully handmade spirits”. They pride themselves in distilling the best, with gin and vodka being made in tiny batches; just a few hundred bottles at a time.  When ‘Prudence’ is in full swing, distilling English Barley alcohol with water from Lydwell Spring (one of the sources of the River Thames); it’s like being in an adult version of Willy Wonka, with all the same temptations that drove Augustus Gloop to a sticky end.

by Em Bell