25-year-old Mitchell Carr is on a gin-fueled mission to shake up the drinks industry. In just 5 months, he’s launched Triple Six Gin, is in more than 50 elite venues and hotels across the UK and is already in negotiations with the United States. Savour editor, Georga Spottiswood, chats to the young entrepreneur about his bold vision.
In 2020, Mitchell Carr was working with his dad in the construction industry. But when lockdown hit, the former biomedical science student invested in his true passions and Triple Six Gin was born.
“I became really fascinated by tinctures; soaking herbal extracts and plants in alcohol to release the compounds that can have health benefits. I’m quite a health fanatic, too – I think we all were during lockdown. I like to go to the gym and look after myself and a few years back I started drinking gin, rather than beer, due to it being less calorific.”
With his mind racing on how to create the perfect gin, Mitchell spent day and night thinking about what would work in the market.
“I wanted a gin low in calories with no harsh aftertaste. Something full of flavour that was smooth, and that you could drink neat, too.”
Through his fascination of tinctures, he started experimenting with passionflower, which is reported to have natural calming effects. Some studies suggest it may even help relieve anxiety and insomnia.
Serious about launching a gin, Mitchell, from Beadnell, Northumberland, took his ideas to Simon Smith – CEO of SAS Global Drinks. “We worked together on perfecting the recipe. Simon is well respected in the drinks industry and works with major global drinks brands. I still remember the moment we tasted the final product; it was at Tebay Services in Cumbria – halfway between his and mine – as we were in lockdown.
“He opened his boot, and from a social distance, we tried what’s now the finished version of Triple Six. It was such as amazing yet weird moment as we couldn’t celebrate with a handshake or a fist pump, but we both knew it was bang on. Tebay will forever be my favourite service station,” laughed Mitchell.
As well as passionflower, the gin features wormwood and black walnut tinctures, which are then expertly blended with key botanicals, including lemongrass and lime peel.
“It took us two months of really fine tuning it to make sure the consistency was right,” said Mitchell. Now that the gin was perfected, the next steps were for Mitchell to work on his route to market plans.
It was a serendipitous moment in his local, Beadnell Towers – which also became the first venue to stock his gin – that Mitchell bumped into David Black three months ago.
David had moved back to Beadnell to help care for his late father. A former head of business development at a leading marketing agency, David was instrumental in successfully building brands; and over a few drinks and a lot of conversation, Mitchell made the decision to take on David as marketing director for the brand.
“I’ve spent a lot of time in the drinks industry – and I have tried a lot of gin. There is just something special about Triple Six; it’s smooth, refreshing and the flavours just work wonderfully together,” said David.
While the gin bottle and label give a nod to Newcastle (and Mitchell’s Geordie upbringing) with two magpies on it, it also features passion flowers that represent the predominant tincture; and a set square and compass portraying the family’s building background.
“We added it onto the label to represent the building trade. The eye symbol is used to represent focus, clarity and vision; and keeping an eye on what’s important,” said Mitchell.
“Although there is reference to Newcastle, I didn’t want to fall into the regional craft drinks market as that’s pretty saturated. I wanted to create a brand that was sexy and sophisticated, and that belonged in private members’ clubs and more elite venues,” said Mitchell.
Now Mitchell is on a mission to take the drinks industry by storm and Triple Six is already behind the bar in more than 50 hotels and restaurants – including top venues in London’s West End. It has also scooped a number of prestigious accolades including being awarded gold at London Gin of the year and double gold at China Wine & Spirits Awards.
“I only launched five months ago, and the response so far has been incredible. Watching people’s faces when they try it for the first time when deciding on whether to stock it is just amazing. It’s given me a real buzz,” said Mitchell.
“We have our sights set on London and Europe and the dream is to break into America. I could absolutely move over there, live in the sun and drink good gin,” he laughed.
“It’s been a phenomenal journey so far, especially with what has been achieved in such a short space of time. We have the overseas contacts, we just need to connect the dots, create the web and think big – with Europe, the US, Dubai and many more on the cards.”
Triple Six Gin is £39.99 a bottle and can be purchased from Savour’s Luxury Gift Guide.