THREE is the magic number for a Cheshire-made gin which has won a top award.

Three Wrens Apple Crumble Gin, which is distilled in Cholmondeley, has taken home a three-star award from Great Taste, one of the world’s largest and most trusted food and drink awards.

The artisan distiller also received stars for three of its other gins in this year’s awards, including the popular Bloody Apricot, Original Dry & Bison Grass flavours – a significant achievement for the business’ very first award entry.

Great Taste is organised by the Guild of Fine Food and is the world’s largest, longest standing and most respected food accreditation scheme for artisan and speciality food producers. The award scheme saw more that 14,000 different products entered from 108 countries.

Less than two per cent of the 14,000+ entrants achieved three stars, highlighting the formidable achievement for such a small Cheshire producer.

Three Wrens Gin will now be able to display the unmistakable black and gold logo – a stamp of excellence that is recognised by retailers and consumers alike – with pride.

Three Wrens master distiller Nick Wadeson took six months to complete the trials for the gin, which has also won two international gold medals at the world gin masters and world gin awards respectively.

Although the exact recipe remains a secret, the flavour is made by macerating toasted oats in the base spirit before distilling with Juniper, Cheshire apples, nutmeg, cinnamon and sweet orange peel. Each batch takes three days to make by hand.

Master Distiller Nick Wadeson explained: “This is without doubt our biggest accolade yet, a three-star rating is incredibly rare, and the holy grail for every food and drink producer.

"We are incredibly proud to be one of a small handful of craft gin producers ever to achieve it. The fact that we are small family business distilling everything ourselves makes it even more special!”

The award-winning apple crumble gin.

The award-winning apple crumble gin.

The entries are blind-tasted, with this year’s judges commenting on the Apple Crumble Gin: “What a fascinating concept, brilliantly executed. Toasty buckwheat porridge with a drizzle of honey and a lift of citrus - and then waves of undulating smoke, toast, barley-sugar, honey, and something intriguing.

"We didn't want to spoil it with tonic, but in the interest of research we did add some. And it wasn't spoilt - rather there was a lift of citrus and a grounding earthiness combined with inspiring sippability. Quite extraordinary.

“A very interesting aroma, sweet notes of oat bringing a suggestion of buttery popcorn. We found it a fascinating, unique flavour: sweet oaten notes again on the palate, which bring out strawberry milkshake and dried apricot flavours whilst the juniper is not hidden but provides a surprisingly harmonious balance to the wonderfully unusual combination of ingredients.”

Three Wrens Gin operates an open-door policy at the distillery, allowing customers to drop in during the week, watch the award-winning gin production and sample the ranges for free. The company also offers a gin distilling experience where visitors are able to create their own unique gin under their expert guidance.

The Great Taste three-star award winning product, Three Wrens Apple Crumble Gin, is available to buy direct from and from most notable Cheshire retailers including the Hollies Farm Shops, RD Wines, Cheerbrook farm Shop, Tanners Wines Chester, Dexter & Jones Knutsford, Whitmore & White Frodsham, Vin Santo Chester, The Emporium Chester, Hopley House farm shop and most good pubs and bars.