Dark Art Distillery officially opened in July 2021 with the launch of its signature Sky Garden Galloway Gin. Established by Andrew Clark Hutchison in the town of Kirkcudbright in Dumfries and Galloway, he is the fifth generation of his family to live and work there. Head Distiller Fiona Williamson is responsible for distillation and product development. Fiona worked closely with Andrew to make his idea for the signature Scottish Gin a reality, thanks partly to Fiona’s qualification from Heriot-Watt University’s Institute of Brewing and Distilling.
Sitting on the edge of the Galloway Forest Park, the distillery takes inspiration from the park itself, which at night becomes one of the darkest places in Europe for star gazing. Kirkcudbright has also been a magnet for artists since the 1800s, including home to members of the ‘The Glasgow Boys and Girls’ art movement. Set in a refurbished primary school that had been left derelict for a number of years, the distillery sits alongside several other businesses that share the site, including the Dark Space Planetarium and several art studios. Many original school features remain, including the clock tower and chalkboards.
Dark Art Distillery’s signature Sky Garden Gin is a classic London Dry Gin flavour profile. Combining piney juniper, vibrant citrus and other classic gin botanicals, Sky Garden Galloway Gin also features a number of night blooming floral botanicals.
Key Botanical(s): Grapefruit, Gorse, Calamint
Gin Style: London Dry
Strength: 42% vol
Goes great with: A slice of lime, tonic and ice.
Forming part of the larger site of the former primary School, the Dark Art Distillery houses a custom-built 450 litre Carl still named ‘Peggy’ after Andrew’s grandmother who hailed from Kirkcudbright. The distillery provides tours where visitors can learn more about the history of the area, history of gin and enjoy some samples. Tours last approximately 1 hour 15 minutes.