Papillon Dartmoor Distillery is the first of its kind within the Dartmoor National Park. Adam and Claire, the owners and distillers, both grew up here and enjoy sharing its special qualities through their small-batch gin.
Together Adam and Claire love to explore Dartmoor, on foot or bike, and are always keen for an adventure. They often take off for a wild camp, always accompanied by a Papillon Gin and Tonic.
The name Papillon captures our love for butterflies and the donations we give to Butterfly Conservation. We donate financially by giving 1% of all bottle sales to work on Dartmoor for the fritillary butterflies, carried out by Butterfly Conservation. We also donate through volunteering our time. Claire carries out Pearl-bordered Fritillary surveys in the local area and the whole team are involved in the Green Recovery for the Marsh Fritillary Project, based on Dartmoor.
We use Portuguese copper alembic stills to distill our gins using the ‘one-shot’ method. Our dried botanicals are macerated (heated and left to steep) for 24 hours and then distilled to create a London dry style of gin.
The definition of London dry is a gin that is infused with botanical flavour through re-distillation. No artificial ingredients, colour or flavour can be added after distillation and the predominant flavour must come from juniper. It has to have a minimum strength of 37.5% abv and it does not have to be made in London.
We have named our stills Small Copper, after the British butterfly, and Borboleta, which means butterfly in Portuguese.
We take traditional gin botanicals; such as juniper, coriander seed, angelica and cardamom, and mix them with specific Dartmoor flavours which are foraged or grown locally; gorse, hawthorn berries, rowan berries, wood sorrel, navelwort, sloes and Devon Violets. Our coriander seeds are from the UK.
The pure water we use is sourced fresh from a hill farm high up on Dartmoor. It springs from just below a granite tor perched up on gorse scattered moorland, where the Pearl Bordered Fritillary can be found pausing its flight to sip from the spring.