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A world of unique, crafted gins

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Total flexibility, no commitment

A world of unique, crafted gins

Easy, free and reliable delivery

Total flexibility, no commitment

A world of unique, crafted gins

Easy, free and reliable delivery

James May now has his own craft gin and it's made with a very unusual botanical...PARSNIP!

James May now has his own craft gin and it's made with a very unusual botanical...PARSNIP!

Jul 22, 2021
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Yes, you read that title correctly!

Motoring star James May (a.k.a Captain Slow), once presenter of the BBC television show, Top Gear, and now co-host of Amazon Prime’s The Grand Tour with Richard Hammond and Jeremy Clarkson, has now turned his hand to distilling craft gin with the brand James Gin.

Mr May’s first foray into the wonderful world of craft spirits is called Asian Parsnip Gin and It was inspired by both his love of Britain and his love of travelling. As the gin’s name suggests, it mixes spices usually found in Asian cuisine and that most British of vegetables, the parsnip, along with the quintessential gin ingredient: juniper, of course.



May originally made a limited-batch of Asian Parsnip Gin that amounted to just 1,420 bottles, all personally signed and numbered by the television star himself, and they have already completely sold out.

Not to worry though, he has said that he will do a second batch and you can pre-order your bottle at the James Gin website: www.jamesgin.com. However, it doesn’t sound like the second batch will get quite as much personal attention from James. In the television presenter’s iconic tone of voice, the website reads:

I’m very flattered by your enthusiasm for my limited edition signed and numbered Asian Parnsip. I am now going to make another batch. The gin will be exactly the same, but it will not be signed and numbered, because I can’t be arsed, and it will be unlimited. As a result it will be slightly cheaper. So, in essence, a more presentable bottle not defaced with the scrawl of an infant, at a better price. Order now for shipment in August.

— James May

This isn’t James May’s first adventure into the culinary arts, he also has a food show on Amazon Prime called Oh Cook! with a cookbook to accompany the show that includes 60 easy recipes for his fans to try at home. And that’s not all, in 2020 James also became the co-owner of a pub called The Royal Oak in Swallowcliff, Wiltshire, at which time you may remember his tweet: “I bought half a pub.”

Gin has always been an interest of James May’s but it wasn’t until he bought into the pub that he really began to act on that interest.

James and Downton Distillery’s Hugh Anderson. Image: jamesgin.com.
James and Downton Distillery’s Hugh Anderson. Image: jamesgin.com.

Ever since my mother gave me some as a baby, I’ve been fascinated by the taste of gin. Much later in life, I bought half a pub, and was struck with an idea: what if I created a gin of my own, to serve to the customers?

— James May

At the start of the project, James was quick to seek out the expertise of Master Distiller Hugh Anderson from Downton Distillery. Together, Hugh and James developed the recipe for Asian Parsnip Gin and when it was ready, May announced the gin using a 10-minute video with FoodTribe explaining exactly how he did it, which you can watch right here:

But what does James May’s Asian Parsnip Gin actually taste like?

It has authentic parsnips notes that are nutty and sweet, with unique earthy tones. They are complemented by spice flavours from India and Southeast Asia and that rich juniper base that is so important to all gins. It is really unique and utterly delicious!

For more information on James May’s Asian Parsnip Gin head to the James Gin website here!


Sophie Ellis-Bextor gin.jpg

Of course, James May isn't the only celebrity to bring out their own gin. Sophie Ellis-Bextor has also teamed up with Pink Marmalade to create an extra special edition of their colour-changing Pink Marmalade Gin. You can read all about this “drink-while-dancing” gin at this link. And if you want to try Pink Marmalade Gin x Sophie Ellis-Bextor yourself, you can purchase bottles in the Craft Gin Club online shop here.

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