JVS Gin is named after Jan Van Speyk, a Dutch naval hero. As with many heroes, the stories have become embellished over time so there are a number of versions, but we grew to like the young man who was determined never to surrender regardless of the threat!
Tasting like a 35%abv tipple, our gin is made with a narrow cut at the heart of the distillation run. This premium approach to gin production is one of our craft principles that makes a smooth distinguished gin.
Jan Van Speyk
1802 – 1831
Jan Van Speyk was born in Amsterdam in 1802. He had a tough childhood, after losing his parents when he was just a few weeks old, he was bought up in an orphanage for his entire childhood.
After originally training as a tailor, young Jan, like many of us needed a career change and went to sea to fight pirates. He did such a good job of turning the tables of terror upon them that when the Dutch War of Independence began, he was given captaincy of his own naval ship.
Folklore says that Jan Van Speyk’s gunboat was blown onto the Belgian coast due to a freak gale and that as soon as near enough, the Belgians started to row towards the ship. Determined to never be taken alive, Jan Van Speyk was either careless with a lit cigar or took matters into his own hands and blew his own ship up, taking the life of his crew, the invading Belgians and himself.
On the look out for a good story, perhaps to boost moral, Jan Van Speyk was given full honors by the Dutch Government; declaring national mourning followed by a Royal decree that there would always be a ship in the Dutch Navy in Van Speyk’s name.
Foolhardy or brave, reckless or determined, whichever way you look at it, Jan Van Speyk lived and died for what he believed in. In an age when our way of life can feel under threat, would you stand up for what you hold dear? How far would you go?