Amidst the man-eating crocs, tasty stingray and sneaky magpie geese of the Top End, a wealth of botanicals is going into what must be the most Aussie spirits from Seven Seasons Co.
When you think of the year’s seasons, you think of the four usual suspects, right? And in places like the Northern Territory and the tropics, only two.
But Indigenous peoples like the Larrakia from the Darwin region know there are seven distinct seasons and have done for around 60,000 years.
And they know this because the land tells them.
Seven Seasons in One Still
Founder of Seven Season Sprits Co and proud Larrakia man, Daniel Motlop, has applied this ancient family knowledge to create Australian craft spirits that not only reflect these seasons, but that truly represent them.
Daniel sources all these ingredients sustainably and ethically, and employs local Indigenous people to harvest them.
We caught up with him at the launch of Seven Seasons at The Barber Shop in Sydney, where he explained that nature shows certain signs to tell him which season it is, and with it what is ready to harvest.
For example, when the Big Winds come around August and September, and the wattle flowers bloom, the green bush ants are at their plumpest.
So Daniel has made his Green Ant Gin to represent this season. It’s a sharp, citrusy gin, perfect for a G&T and even as a Southside.
In November and December, when the long-awaited Rainy Season comes and the tree frogs begin their song, the vines of the native yam show their tiny flowers.
These flowers are the telltales for when the yams are ripe for harvest, and so Daniel’s remarkable Native Yam Vodka is ready too.
An earthy, bold spirit with a creamy almost oily start and wonderful lightness at the end, this vodka is perfect neat or perhaps with a touch of vermouth for a dry martini. Let the spirit speak.
And from January to March, the Monsoon Season hits and everything springs into life. Crocodiles and barramundi are laying eggs, and the pink bush apples with their giant stones and crunchy flesh are ready.
Seven Seasons’ bright red Bush Apple Gin harnesses these uniquely NT fruits to create a rich floral drink that adds something special to a negroni. Even more so to a Gin Spritz.
For now, these three of his seven spirits are all that Daniel’s telling us about.
Four more seasons are still to come with names like Heavy Dew Time, Knock ‘em Down Season, Bush Fruit Time and the Build Up.
We can’t wait to see what’s up Mr Motlop’s sleeve, and how he plans to show his expressions of the land and the changes in its natural cycle.