spirits with a twist of history
Proud to live and work in the historical town of Stratford upon Avon, known worldwide as the birthplace of William Shakespeare, we wanted to create something authentic to our area. Of course we couldn’t distil the bard himself into a bottle, but we could look at the Tudor period in which he lived and the characters he created in his plays, bringing the essence of this into our spirits.
The Tudor era was a significant period for spirit production, as people began using it not only for medicinal purposes, but to enjoy as a recreational drink. The 16th and 17th centuries became a time of great discovery, experimentation and innovation.
At Shakespeare Distillery we aim to recapture this period of innovation by fusing traditional and, in some cases, forgotten ingredients with modern techniques to create exciting new spirits. We now produce a range of premium, handcrafted gins and rums made entirely onsite at the distillery, including the award-winning Stratford Dry Gin and Jester Rum.
Stratford's only working distillery
Founded in 2015, the distillery is located on the Drayton Manor Farm estate on the north western edge of Stratford upon Avon. In 2019 we opened our doors as a visitor centre and along with our onsite shop, we now offer a suite of popular experiences including Tours, Gin Schools, Gin Tasting Cruises and Cocktail Masterclasses. Our visitor centre was awarded Gold in the New Tourism Business category at the 2020 West Midlands Tourism Awards and has received a 2021 Traveller's Choice Award by Tripadvisor. No appointments are needed to visit the shop however you will need to book a space on our experiences.
In 2020 we created a wonderful extension to our visitor space: a Coffee and Cocktail Lounge for early arrivals on our experiences and for those guests who want to linger a little longer, perhaps over a final Stratford G&T? Available to anyone visiting the distillery for a Tour or Gin School, we offer an array of soft drinks, hot drinks and alcoholic beverages, along with some delicious cakes and snacks.
of Shakespeare Distillery
At the heart of everything we do is our close-knit team, recognised by our visitors as knowledgeable and incredibly passionate about all we do.
Founder and Head Distiller, Simon, spent two years creating Stratford Dry Gin from his own small copper still at home. Inspired by his Warwickshire location and his love of history, Shakespeare Distillery was born with the aim of using traditional Tudor period ingredients that would have been familiar to the bard and giving them a fresh twist to create modern new spirits. Despite the demands of a growing business, Simon is still very hands on, overseeing the production of all our spirits and the running of our visitor centre, ensuring our customers get a second to none experience. Simon still personally conducts many of our experiences.
With a PHD in Astrophysics followed by a background in Marketing, Sales and Events, Peter joined as Director to help turn Shakespeare Distillery from an idea into reality. He oversees the financial management, sales and marketing side of the business. Peter is very handy to have around, being able to turn his mind to anything and devise something that works! His favourite saying is ‘Well its not rocket science is it?’.
Our small team has expanded significantly in recent years to support with distillery production, running experiences, retail, sales and marketing.
The peopleof Shakespeare Distillery
"The staff are extremely knowledgeable and passionate about their products and very helpful and friendly!"