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Sharish Gin

António Cuco first had the idea to make his own gin in September 2013, and by October he was already working on a recipe using the pressure cooker in his kitchen to tinker with various botanicals. This initial incarnation of Sharish Gin sold around 15 litres a week, even with these relatively crude methods.

It wasn’t until the next year that António would become a certified distiller, refining his craft and operating using two 300 litre copper pot stills, lovingly nicknamed ‘The Minions’. The botanicals he used included bourbon vanilla, cinnamon, cloves, coriander and Macedonian juniper, as well as apples, lemons and oranges, which are macerated when fresh and sourced from his 16,000 square foot estate. Each botanical is distilled separately, apart from from vanilla and cinnamon, which are infused once everything has been blended together in a 210 litre tank. He combines this botanical makeup with a neutral spirit with a rice and wheat based neutral spirits, after a friend’s recommendation.

A key part of the brand’s identity is the striking Mahe bottle, which has certainly been a factor in the considerable success of Sharish Gin thus far. The design is a testament to Portuguese artisan and nightlife culture; the logo is a charming doodle of Monsaraz’s silhouette and the bottles’ wide shape was chosen to illicit images of the round Bocksbeutel bottles that so often house Portuguese wines.

The combination of an ambitious founder, fresh, local botanicals and clever brand awareness has seen Sharish Gin grow from strength to strength. Initially, Cuco created a buzz through word of mouth, as he included his name and number on a card with each bottle of Sharish Gin. Expectations of projected sales have been repeatedly smashed and, to date, Sharish has sold over 100,000 bottles. So - care to see what all the fuss is about?

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