Martin and Claire, the husband and wife team & founders of Dunnet Bay Distillers, meticulously oversee the entire production process to ensure each bottle embodies the flavour, passion, and quality associated with their spirits. From hand-filling to individual wax-sealing, batch numbering, and personal signatures, every step is taken with great care at their distillery in Dunnet.
Their Rock Rose journey traces back to university days, where they dreamt of returning to Caithness to start a business together. Martin's background in chemical and process engineering, coupled with Claire's expertise in hospitality and tourism, laid the foundation. Martin's experience in the oil and gas industry helped them to set up and establish Dunnet Bay in 2014, with the installation of their first copper pot still, 'Elizabeth.'
Despite aiming for 10,000 bottles in the first year, they surpassed expectations, selling 9,000 bottles in the first quarter, and the initial batch sold out within 48 hours of release in August 2014. Their diverse skill sets, honed in previous careers, proved invaluable in setting up the distillery. Martin's familiarity with large equipment complemented the planning and operation, while Claire's background in hospitality and marketing contributed to the customer-focused aspects of the business.
Their vision was to create jobs in Caithness and build a family-oriented life in their birth county. The success surpassed their dreams, with Dunnet Bay Distillers employing fourteen people, winning the 2019 Scottish Gin Distillery of the Year, and receiving Great Taste Awards for Rock Rose Gin, Navy Strength Gin, and Holy Grass Vodka. Their gin now reaches enthusiasts worldwide.