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Eighty-Six Friends

In the wake of the global pandemic in 2020, a duo, bound by over a decade of friendship and a shared zeal for premium spirits, decided to morph their dream into a tangible reality, thus giving birth to Eighty-Six Friends. The individuals, both born in 1986, found themselves with ample time during the lockdown and chose to utilise it by plunging into the world of spirit creation, motivated by numerous prior discussions of launching a business dedicated to their enthusiasm for top-tier drinks.

Origin of the Brand Name and Symbolism

The brand’s nomenclature, Eighty-Six Friends, is twofold in its origin: reflecting the founders' birth year and alluding to the term 'eighty-six it,' used during the Prohibition era to caution bars of impending raids. The logo, featuring a friendly cockatoo named Sammi donning a monocle, symbolises the brand’s commitment to crafting spirits that elevate social occasions, with the monocle reflecting the premium quality of its products.

Ethical and Quality Standards

The founders pledged adherence to an ethos underpinned by simplicity, premium quality, natural ingredients, and an unwavering commitment to flavour. The intention was not merely to create premium rums and gin but to infuse them with imaginative flavours, using solely natural ingredients and sourcing locally when feasible. This conscientious approach aimed to ensure their spirits met exacting standards, effectively amalgamating superb flavours with high-quality spirits.

Developing Flavours

Dedicating nearly a year to developing various flavour profiles and generously involving friends in the tasting and feedback process, the team finally solidified the initial flavours that would pioneer the Eighty-Six Friends spirit range. Their launch in July 2021 saw the introduction of three premium spirits, each adorned with the Latin name of their dominant flavour: Mel (Honey), Musa (Banana), and Rheum (Rhubarb).

Mel - Honey Spiced Rum

This offering melds the smooth sweetness of locally sourced honey, where available, from the home counties of Cambridgeshire and Suffolk, with vibrant orange zest, gentle warmth from cinnamon and ginger, rounded off with nuanced vanilla and maple syrup notes.

Musa - Banana Rum

Musa delivers a bold, natural banana aroma, complemented by undertones of toffee and cinnamon, citrus and tropical nuances on the palate, culminating in a persistent banana aftertaste. The base notes and well-rounded finish are achieved by marrying pulped bananas with meticulous crafting techniques.

Rheum - Cloudy Rhubarb & Apple Gin

This gin provides an immediate hit of fresh rhubarb aroma, partnered with a whisper of red apple, offering an initial sweet rhubarb flavour that segues into a tart apple finish. The inclusion of natural fresh fruit juices enables a distinctive flavour blend, delivering subtle sweetness and a rejuvenating sour twist, with a unique filtration method ensuring the rhubarb’s cloudiness, and thereby its taste and aromatic notes, are preserved.Despite the fluctuations of the journey and instances that could have resulted in surrender, the unwavering support and feedback from their community fortified their resolve. As they anticipate expanding their range in the forthcoming years, the founders of Eighty-Six Friends remain steadfast in their allegiance to their original ethos: simplicity, premium quality, natural ingredients, and the refusal to compromise on flavour, affirming that perfection is not to be hurried.

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