Distilling gin is a time-honoured tradition and the diversity of the spirit is not to be underestimated. But, few gins around the world are made with such unique ingredients, depth of flavour and uncompromising commitment to sustainability as those made at our Inverroche Distillery in Still Bay – it’s a kind of African Alchemy.

Over a period of three years Lorna sat at that kitchen table with her son Rohan and, through trial and error, developed the range of Inverroche Gins that you can enjoy today. “It was a labour of love. We never dreamed of the commercial success we’ve enjoyed, we just did it because we were fascinated with the botanicals and the process; it was an adventure that ultimately turned into the business it is today,” beams Lorna.

It wasn’t just the ingredients that they experimented with, but also the method. This eventually lead to them developing their own proprietary process whereby they charge the pot still with their base spirit and then layer the selected botanicals into specially designed steam baskets within the pot still. Adding the fynbos in this manner allows the gently heated spirit vapour to extract the aromatic oils from the botanicals before collecting in the helm and traveling down the condenser – the result is a subtle, yet complex spirit infused with layers of exceptional flavours and unique aromas.
But, the proof of the pudding is in the eating or, in this case, the drinking. “We knew we were doing something right when very quickly demand outstripped our ability to supply and we had to bring in a 1,000-litre wood-fired copper pot still,” adds Lorna. Aptly named Magnanimous Meg, this magnificent and eccentric new still was custom designed and built for Inverroche in Stellenbosch.

If you’ve had Inverroche Gin in the past three years, you’ll know and approve of Meg’s work! “And, in case it ever comes up as a Trivial Pursuit question, both stills are named after Meg Dodds, the irascible landlady in Sir Walter Scott’s famous novel St. Ronan’s Well,” Lorna says with a twinkle in her eye.

Once the gin has been distilled, every bottle is filled, labelled and boxed by hand, each bottle is also individually numbered to ensure optimum quality control before leaving the distillery.

The Cape Floral Kingdom

The Cape Floral Kingdom is one of only six such biomes in the World. It is the smallest, but also the richest and most abundant with more species of plant being found on the slopes of Table Mountain than in all of Great Britain! It is these plants, known as fynbos, that we use to give our gins their unique character and flavour

We propagate, grow and harvest our own and also source fynbos from local farmers and organisations who already provide plant material to the broader industry for medicinal or culinary use. We work with several indigenous plant nurseries, to propagate plants for us which are then re-established in their natural environment and hand harvested. All our plantings are registered with and supervised by Cape Nature.



Fynbos has been used by the indigenous people of South Africa for Millennia as a source of food, shelter, warmth and, of course, its medicinal properties are far ranging and potent. Here are 5 fynbos from the Cape Floral Kingdom that everybody should know about.

1. Wild Garlic Tulbaghia violacea
Similar to normal garlic, but stronger in smell, wild garlic’s bulb infused in water is excellent for colds, fevers, stomach aches, muscle pain and more. The bulb, with a unique garlic taste, can also be used in meat dishes and the flower offers a mild, but lovely addition to salads.

2. Buchu
Agathosma species
Although challenging to grow, Buchu attracts bees and butterflies to the garden, and is a natural insect repellent if rubbed on your skin or bedding. To deal with hangovers simply add a handful of the leaves to boiling water and drink as a tea.

3. Tortoise Bush
Muraltia spinosa
This coastal plants’ twigs and leaves are infused in water and used for general pains. The berry is also sometimes eaten, especially by tortoises who love hanging around these bushes during berry season.

4. Sour FigCarpobrotus accinaciformis and C. muirrii
The dried fruit often sold on the side of the road is great for sprawling quickly over undesirable banks and areas of the garden you want to cover. But you might not know that you can eat the fruit raw and that drinking the leaf juice will help with indigestion, toothache, and earache and other common ailments. It also helps subdue insect bites and bluebottle stings..

5. Honeybush
Cyclopia species
Honeybush produces an exciting pea-shaped yellow flower in spring that is a feature for any garden. The plant grows quickly, needs pruning, and looks best when planted in groups at least one metre apart. There are 23 types of Honeybush, but only 9 make good tea.