The desire to capture a place and a moment in time through scent is a centuries-old tradition, but bringing it to fruition can take the perfumer along many different paths. For LUMIRA, it results in unique fragrances for the home and the self; for Grown Spirits, it’s about distilling a fragrant moment into its most thirst-quenching form.
When the two come together, the result is Tonic of Gin, one of the most refreshing gin-scented candles you’re likely to encounter.
When they launched Grown in 2015, founders Will Miles and Frank Bethel set about to “bottle the aroma and feel of the quintessential Australian summer,” Miles recalls. “It’s a time when gardens are blossoming with sweet balmy fragrances that hang in the warm air as you stroll around the neighbourhood as the sun is setting.”
To capture this feeling in their Garden Grown Gin, the pair used fresh, handpicked botanicals such as murraya and the highly fragrant Duchesse de Brabant rose alongside chamomile, angelica, sage and orris root. The award-winning luxury gin is fresh and floral, with distinct notes of jasmine and sweet honeysuckle.
Two years later, Bethel and Miles worked with LUMIRA’s Almira Armstrong to translate Garden Grown into a Tonic of Gin candle – and they discovered many important synergies in the process.
“We connected when it came to quality products and the very best ingredients. It has to start there,” says Miles. “But we both recognise that it’s the care in combining and the expert crafting of those ingredients that makes them become infinitely greater than their individual parts.”
For her part, Armstrong says she was “intrigued” by how Grown Spirits was able to create such a fragrant gin. “I wanted to understand their process in achieving such a delicious, heightened scent,” she recalls. Surprisingly, the answer was closer to Armstrong’s realm than she first realised.
“The other botanicals in the gin were all distilled traditionally, however, that process didn’t work so well for the murraya and rose,” Miles explains. “They were just too sensitive to the heat required. So, we use enfleurage, a technique that the original perfumers in Grasse, France, had invented for this very reason. The more delicate flowers, like ours, were placed over a layer of scentless copha (coconut fat), which draws out the essential oil and, in turn, the aroma from the flowers.” The aroma is then infused into the alcoholic liquid.
Both Miles and Armstrong agree that a gin-and-tonic candle is the ideal scent for late afternoons and evenings on a warm spring or summer’s day.
As Miles notes: “Our gin celebrates the smell of the garden bursting to life in the warmer months, so we like having the doors open when hanging with friends. When we come inside as the evening cools, we can bring the outside in with us by lighting our Tonic of Gin candle.”
Shop Tonic of Gin.
Written by Michelle Bateman