Fords Gin: the ultimate cocktail workhorse

Fords Gin – known for its classic, London dry-style juniper punch and all-round cocktail versatility – will be the feature gin at the hotly-anticipated Employees Only outpost, opening in Sydney soon.

Distilled in London at Thames Distillers, Fords Gin is a collaboration between eighth generation master distiller Charles Maxwell and Simon Ford of the The 86 Co (pictured above).

The gin itself is a mix of nine botanicals, starting with a traditional base of juniper and coriander seed – balanced by citrus (bitter orange, lemon and grapefruit peel), florals (jasmine flower and orris) and spices (angelica and cassia). The botanicals are steeped for 15 hours before distillation in 500-litre stills.

Crucially, The 86 Co. team tested the recipe in classic gin cocktails before finalising the exact formula. Flavour-wise, Fords is described as “aromatic, fresh and floral with elegant notes of orange blossom in a harmonious blend with citrus and juniper”.

Fords Gin

“Fords is the perfect all-purpose gin,” says James France, founder and managing director of Vanguard Luxury Brands, which brings the gin into Australia. “Its 45% ABV carries delicious juniper flavours throughout any cocktail.

“It was developed by Simon Ford who spent many years as the Plymouth brand ambassador. Fords gin was tested rigorously across dozens of classic recipes. Simon would argue that every bar only needs one London dry gin: Fords.”

Another point of difference is that Fords comes in a bespoke bottle designed with bartender ergonomics in mind. It’s easy to lift out of the well and won’t slip out of your hand when pouring. The bottle also features measuring marks on the side which make stocktake that much easier.

If you haven’t found that one London dry that knocks your socks off, then Fords Gin may well be it.

Fords Gin suggested serves

Bees Knees


  • 60ml Fords Gin
  • 20ml lemon juice
  • 20ml honey

Method: Shake ingredients with ice and strain into a coupe glass.

Tuxedo 86


  • 60ml Fords Gin
  • 20ml Manzanilla Sherry
  • 15ml Cherry Heering liqueur
  • 1 barspoon absinthe
  • 1 dash orange bitters

Method: Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass. Add ice and stir until well chilled. Strain into a chilled coupe glass, and garnish with a lemon twist.

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