A BRADFORD-born gin expert has taken his experience from one of the UK’s top gin producers to come back to his roots and launch his own distillery.

Ben Peel worked for gin giant Sipsmith in London before quitting his job last year to move home and create his own brand of the nation’s favourite spirit.

Mr Peel, along with partner and co-founder Emelie Nilsson, have now launched their new company, John Robert’s Botanic Request, based in Woodhall off Leeds/Bradford Road.

They have built up the brand throughout the Covid-19 pandemic before launching the micro-distillery in April and are already stocked at a number of venues in Bradford and across West Yorkshire.

The couple both quit their jobs last year and sold the houseboat they called home to move back to West Yorkshire and start their company, building a liquid laboratory and micro-distillery in their garage to begin distilling and experimenting with their new product.

Mr Peel, 36, hails from Wibsey but his career as a barman has taken him from The Windmill and Ancient Foresters in the village to Switzerland, where he and Emelie first met, Hong Kong, Sweden and eventually London.

After enjoying careers in the capital they have returned to Mr Peel’s hometown to launch their own brand.

He said: “It’s been a journey but a great full circle to arriving back on Yorkshire soil.

“We only launched on Easter weekend, but the local support from my friends and family has been unreal, I can’t thank them enough for spreading the word.

“We are now looking to widen our stockists within the city, if anyone would like to hear from us we would be happy to come down and introduce ourselves and our fantastic spirit.”

John Robert’s Botanic Request is currently stocked at Al’s Juke Bar and the Boar & Fable in Bradford city centre and Al’s Salt Bar in Saltaire, but Mr Peel said his dream is to stock the Odeon once it is reopened as Bradford Live.

“I’ve done charity gigs with my old bands in the city for that beautiful building along with being one of the people who took part in the protest/hugging the Odeon when its future was unsure,” he said.

“Being a former musician from the Bradford music scene I know how important this venue could be for the heart and soul of the city, and it aligns perfectly with our brand’s ethos.”

Unusual processes they are pioneering are vacuum pressure maceration and ultrasonic sound extraction to create a unique-tasting product.

Vacuum pressure maceration involves extracting all required oils and flavours from woodier and hardier botanical ingredients, while ultrasonic sound extractions uses sound frequencies to gently remove delicate flavours leaving unwanted plant mass and flavours behind.

You can order the gin at botanicrequest.com