Published on June 21, 2023.
The Roots of Seedlip.
Over 300 years ago, it was common for physicians to distil herbal remedies using copper stills, harnessing the power of nature and alchemy to solve medical maladies. In 1651, one such physician, John French, published The Art of Distillation, documenting these non-alcoholic recipes. At that same time, a family in Lincolnshire had started farming, hand-sowing seeds using baskets called ‘seedlips’. Centuries later, Ben Branson stumbled upon John French’s recipes. Ever the tinkerer, he was inspired to purchase a small copper still and experiment with distilling herbs grown in his garden at home.
After a few months’ time, while dining at an upscale London restaurant, Ben ordered a non-alcoholic cocktail. To his dismay, he was served a pink, sugary drink that neither paired with the meal, nor the atmosphere. And so began two meticulous years of perfecting the world’s first distilled non-alcoholic spirit–combining Ben’s farming heritage, love of nature and design, and fulfilling the need for a sophisticated non-alcoholic option.
Those years resulted in the development of Seedlip’s bespoke, six-week maceration, distillation, filtration, and blending process–for which each individual botanical ingredient is distilled separately, before blending. This process results in a liquid devoid of alcohol and sugar. Ben launched Seedlip Spice 94 in London’s Selfridges on November 4th, 2015. His first handmade 1,000 bottles sold out within three weeks, the second thousand in three days, and the third in 30 minutes online.
The pioneering movement of offering those not drinking alcohol a sophisticated, adult option has since become a segment all its own: the ever-growing no and low alcohol category. And since, Seedlip has been embraced by the world’s best bars, restaurants, hotels and retailers across the globe. What began in a kitchen in the woods is now leading a worldwide revolution–changing the way we drink.
As Seedlip continues to grow, they are humbled by the response. Two gold medals at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, opening up additional offices in Los Angeles and Sydney, launching their most recent citrus expression, Seedlip Grove 42, publishing a Cocktail Book with Penguin, the global launch of the first-ever no and low alcohol cocktail concept are just some of the many highlights thus far. They are still very much just getting started. Ultimately, regardless of why you’re not drinking, we’re proud to offer you the choice of a flavorful, sophisticated, adult option.
A non-alcoholic citrus blend using three varieties of Mediterranean Orange, Lemon peel, Ginger and Lemongrass distillates with the cool prickle of Japanese Sansho Peppercorn for a sophisticated finish.
A floral blend of hand-picked Peas & homegrown Hay from founder Ben Branson’s farm, with traditional garden herb distillates in celebration of the English countryside. Simply serve with your favourite tonic & a sugar snap pea to garnish!
This non-alcoholic spirit alternative from Seedlip is one of the most innovative products we’ve seen for a long time. It’s made like a gin with botanicals, but is definitely not a gin. The predominant flavour is clove rather than juniper.
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About the author
Chloe looks after all copywriting and proof-reading for Drink Warehouse UK, working with the Marketing team to deliver educational content to all our customers. She has spent many years in the hospitality sector, moving from behind the bar to now helping venues to stock their own. You can find more from Chloe about beer, cider, spirits, wine, non-alcoholic, soft drinks and RTDs all over our blogs, website, social media and Set The Bar magazine.