Gin has such a colourful past and is now very much part of modern times, with craft gin distilleries popping up all over the world!
The extremely talented folk behind brand new gin podcast - Mother's Ruin are eager to tell the tale of our favourite spirit in a comical, (gin)teresting fashion. We spoke to Mat Reed, comedian and one half of this (gin)credibly witty and informative program!
Hi Mat! So your day job is to make people laugh, how did you get into the wonderful world of gin and how did the Mother's Ruin podcast come about?
Hello there, thanks for having me!
I am indeed a comedian, and it’s via comedy that my love of gin developed - working in Bars, festivals and clubs. I’m not a beer drinker at all so I had to find a drink. Whiskey made me heave, rum is too sweet, but gin has the most incredible balance. I started trying all of them way before it started to blow up.
I did a gig at Aberystwyth University, and the organiser, who was massively into gin, did a night called Ginasis, where they played genesis music and drank as many gins as they could find (back then there was nowhere near the selection we have now, and only two or three tonics). That’s when I knew I wasn’t alone in my love of gin. So as I wander the world I drink all the different types of gin I come across and intend to maintain my record of a new gin a week.
Why do you think we've seen such an increase in interest in gin?
I feel the interest in gin has been a long time coming. It's had a weird reputation at every step of its life has gin. From the source of all evil to nannas tipple. From hip-hop drink of choice to spinster's make-up ruiner. But these days there are so many ways to make it just right, and so many more beautiful mixers, that gin isn’t just a bitter drink that your grandma liked. Hendricks showed us that gin could taste different - that Gordon’s wasn’t your only choice - then Sipsmith’s started making small-batch gin again.
The flavour is now the focus. You can have a fancy label all you want but the flavour has to speak for itself and gin is a blank canvas. Now the introduction of flavoured gins is making it skyrocket again (I imagine the stocks in rhubarb have gone up more than ever before).
When did you first fall in love with this wonderful spirit? First G&T? Favourite Gin Cocktail?
I used to drink gin with my Mam. It was how we spent time when she was ill, sitting around enjoying gins poured in generous measures (we called triples 'mother's measures'). So I have many positive memories of gin, but when I first tasted Hendrick's I knew I was in love.
It was at a Cambridge white tie do. I was inexplicably booked to do the comedy for them and I popped to the stall outside and was offered a drink with cucumber in it! My disgust soon vanished when I took a sip. Since that happened, (as well as about eight more that night), I would actively seek out as many different gins as I could.
That was 2008 and I’ve tried at least 200 gins since. People consider G&T a cocktail sometimes so I’d say that is my fave cocktail but I’m also partial to a bramble as well.
Best ginny fact?
My favourite gin facts, many of which I have learned through making this podcast, are that gin went from a medicine to a deadly social poison, and returned triumphantly as one of the most popular drinks on the planet. A bit like a misunderstood villain in a superhero film, which I’m sure is going to happen to me at some point in my life.
What's next for Mother's Ruin?
We have just written an outline for all of next season and can’t wait to start recording. More history definitely, more tastings and more meeting the people involved. The great thing about gin is we have noticed how together and close-knit gin distillers and distributors are. We want to do a tour of UK distilleries and meet the weird and wonderful people behind the brands. So a road trip may be in order. And hopefully just maintain and improve on what I believe is a thoroughly entertaining podcast about our favourite thing in the world. We’d like to openly invite gin industry people and enthusiasts to contact us on our website or any of our social media and get involved.
The more the merrier
Best ginny joke (sorry - couldn't resist)
My favourite gin joke is probably the same as yours “fancy a quick one” Hahahahahah “ONE” hahahahaha...
Why not pour yourself a large G&T, sit back and listen to Mother's Ruin reviewing this month's wonderful gin (amongst other ginny fun!) here: https://craftgin.club/2uKTNgF