Born out of a yearning to do something creative, authentic and a whole bunch of fun, Nikki and Geoff Drummond established Magpie Distilling in 2020. The two former Sydney residents knew the job at hand was daunting. Transitioning from corporate life to the inspiring yet challenging life of Murrurundi was going to be a big task. The couple persisted and are now proud owners and operators of a distillery producing award-winning spirits.
While the distillery was established in 2020, it is a coming together of a desire that fuelled the couple for many years. So named after the families of “Swoopy Boiz” who have inhabited their farm longer than they have and keep a vigil on the day to day activities, Magpie Distilling is an ode to the very clever, social, proud and fun Magpies. The qualities Geoff and Nikki strive to represent through their brand and their spirits.
At the London Spirits Competition’s 2021 edition, Magpie Distilling was among the distilleries to have two award-winning spirits to their name. Both scoring silver medals, the Murrurundi Dry Gin was awarded 88 points and the Songbird Gin scored 85 points, to give Magpie Distilling a great start on their spirits journey on foreign shores. The two gins are also at the source of two amazing cocktails that are bound to make your days more fun.
The Dirty Magpie Martini
Starting off with the slightly higher scoring Murrurundi Gin is a revamped take on the classic Martini. Magpie Distilling’s flagship gin is at the base of the ‘King of all Cocktails’ who H.L. Mencken described as “the only American invention as perfect as a sonnet.'' Here's what goes into making The Dirty Magpie Martini from Magpie Distilling.
- 150ml Murrurundi Dry Gin
- 25ml Maidenii Dry Vermouth
- 25ml Dirty Sue Olive Brine
- 6 Green Olives
Put two martini glasses in the fridge to chill. Thread the olives onto two cocktail sticks and set them aside. Fill a jug or mixing glass with the ice, then pour in the gin, vermouth and olive brine. Stir until the outside of the jug feels cold. Strain the mix into the chilled glasses and garnish with the olive skewers.
The Blushing Magpie
Closely following the Murrurundi Dry Gin at the London Spirits Competition was the Songbird Gin which is at the base of this fantastic cocktail. The Blushing Magpie is a take on the Songbird Spritz, a cocktail created and served at the wonderful glasshouse restaurant at Goonoo Goonoo Station just south of Tamworth in New South Wales. The fragrant and delicately perfumed Songbird Gin with cassia and pomegranate marries lovingly with a dry prosecco and lemonade to create this drink perfect for a summer afternoon. This is how you make the Blushing Magpie.
- 30ml Songbird Gin
- 60ml Pizzini Prosecco NV
- 60ml good quality Lemonade
- Crushed Ice
- Mint Leaves
Pour the gin, prosecco, lemonade and ice into a glass jug. Stir well until the outside of the glass feels cold. Pour into a tall or wide glass and garnish with the picked mint leaves.
Nikki and Geoff Drummond, in a matter of a year, have created a brand that is already among the winners at prestigious competitions like the London Spirits Competition. Perhaps enjoying a cocktail made from their flagship gins will inspire you to take up a hobby that you so love. These two found their calling with Magpie Distilling and the world of spirits now has a new gin distillery to keep their eyes on Down Under.