The best stories start, or at least – end with falling in love? Perhaps. But one can also fall in love with…gin. Add a pinch of courage, chase of new gin taste experiences and here you go: TOHI Distillery was born.
Tohi master distiller, one of the founders and furthermore – a huge gin fan – is Mr Priit Palk, who´s diligence in the world of gins sets a precedent. The love of juniper nectar, aka gin – is also shared by good friends Tormi Tamm and Siim Markus. All three guys got bitten by the gin bug and decided to found their very own distillery.
Of the one and only
The one and only place for making the new gin was found rather quickly. You know how it goes – the first look makes all the difference! A century ago, Estonia was famous for its manor houses and their vodka kitchens (basically as distilleries), producing tons of spirit and vodka for the mighty Russian Empire. Acquiring a whole manor house seemed a bit excessive, the hunt was for the vodka kitchens. When the three guys spotted Tohisoo with its tall chimney – it was the ONE immediately. Located just 30 km from Tallinn, Tohisoo was waiting there like an abandoned sleeping princess. Zero barrels of vodka had not been there for ages, but instead some fashionable leather goods by “Linda” factory until the 90ies. Kiss the house and voila´ – the perfect spot for gin distilling was found!
Of the newborn gin recipe
Cleaning up the dust and old machinery of the leather mill took some time. After a while, new habitants moved in – shiny copper distilling pot stills, bottling line, precise laboratory equipment and other machinery needed for excellent gin production.
At the same time, Priit tested different gin recipes and spice combinations. Juniper berries are the backbone of every gin, but what else defining ingredients to use, in order to stand out? The master distiller tested different peppers, gingers, chamomile, coriander, cabbage, cassia bark and so many others – they all went through the new copper pipes! Then finally, the heureka moment – Priit decided to test berries that are characteristic to Nordic nature. For gin´s sweeter undertone and uniqueness – cloudberries were the first choice. Often referred as an exclusive, vitamin C bomb of the Nordics and found only in the Northern hemisphere.
We gathered good friends, sommeliers, and bartenders who agreed to taste all the gin madness that poured out of that machine. Finally, cloudberry taste was the one with highest scores. It is the heart of TOHI´s very first gin – the Cloudberry Mist. Together with cardamom, juniper berries, ginger and immortelle flower – a truly passionate gin combination
Of the name – TOHI
You have probably guessed by now, why our gin is called TOHI. Tohisoo manor house = TOHI
It almost sounds Asian, but you can also think TOO HIGH, or see the play on words: TOHIB, EI TOHI [CAN, CAN NOT]. TOHI means “a bird“ in Japanese and „peace, balance“ in Cherokee.
Coincidentally, we share the same name with a talented Persian hip-hop artist Tohi. We love his music and hopefully he loves the Tohi gin and visits us one day.
Of the details
- TOHI gin is created for optimists – there is a scale on the bottle that indicates whether the bottle is full, half full/empty, or empty. On the mark that suggests that half the gin bottle has been consumed, the scale still shows FULL. Therefore- TOHI’s bottle is always half full.
- The bird with a ring was inspired from the coat of arms of Bellinghausen. The very same admiral Bellinghausen who discovered the Antarctica and in some point of time owned the Tohisoo manor house next to TOHI Distillery.
- TOHI gin is not handcrafted, it is heartcrafted. We leave a piece of our hearts in each of the gin batches distilled.
Is TOHI any better than other gins?
It’s not necessarily better, however our gins are definitely one of a kind and most recognizables with that special hint of a cloudberry, aronia or 13 spices.