Taste the Eyre Peninsula in local gin

CHEERS: Port Lincoln gin business EP Spirits have won gold in a Tasting Australia content that received over 150 entries across the country. Photo: EP Spirits
CHEERS: Port Lincoln gin business EP Spirits have won gold in a Tasting Australia content that received over 150 entries across the country. Photo: EP Spirits

Local businessmen and gin connoisseurs Kyle Ralston and Dylan Puckridge have won gold in a Tasting Australia competition for their gin produced from their company EP Spirits.

The co-owners won the gold medal in the New World Contemporary category that received 150 entries from across the country for gin alone.

The firm was among four winners from South Australia and part-owner Kyle Ralston said it was a surprise when they placed in gold, despite trading for just over six months.

"When we won the award, we were surrounded by some top distilleries and it was such an amazing feeling," he said.

"We didn't even realise - we saw the bronze and silver medal winners first and thought 'oh well, at least we tried!'"

 GOLD FOR GIN: The award-winning business EP Spirits has plans to expand to include a cellar door and other varieties of alcohol. Photo: EP Spirits

GOLD FOR GIN: The award-winning business EP Spirits has plans to expand to include a cellar door and other varieties of alcohol. Photo: EP Spirits

The winning gin is distilled in Port Lincoln and the firm has plans to extend their business with the addition of a cellar door and venue location.

"We wanted to see how things would go for the first year, and things have gone better than we thought they would. This has given us an extra 'oomph' to do more," Mr Ralston said.

When discussing what flavours to use, the duo decided they wanted something that represented home and that locals could be proud of.

"We wanted a gin that represents the Eyre Peninsula so we wanted it to have the earthy flavours of the bush, and then what the region is well known for which is crystal-clear sea waters, so we wanted that refreshing finish," he said.

Mr Ralston and Mr Puckridge met while working at The Line and Label restaurant at Peter Teakle Wines, where they bonded over putting a gin distillery on the map for the peninsula.

Looking to the future, the firms hopes to have a vodka - which they are now working on - available in the next few months.

As well there are plans to create a coffee liqueur with fellow local business Boston Bean.

"Sue and Richard, of Boston Bean, are such a wonderful couple. We are happy we have a good friendship with them," Mr Ralston said.

"We know how much coffee liqueur and espresso martinis are in demand in the region so we wanted to release one that is also something the people of the peninsula can be proud of."