How did a hard arse barber from NZ become the legend behind the Gold Coast's first Craft Distillery?
Granddad Jack's Craft Distillery is the first distillery located on the Gold Coast in Queensland, Australia. We are a family owned and operated distillery creating craft spirits & liqueurs for the world to enjoy and paying homage to the legend that was Granddad Jack.
David Goulding, better known as "Granddad Jack", was born on the 11th of June 1919 in the small town of Timaru in the South Island of New Zealand.
From a very young age, as the 'man of the house' he was called upon to provide for his family since his father had unfortunately passed away eight months before he was born.
At 13, David and a friend set out on an epic 65-Mile journey riding their bikes to a sheep station looking for work, carrying with them only a small canteen made from a syrup tin, their lunch and a bottle of homemade whiskey. After leaving in the early hours they finally arrived at 3o'clock showing very little fatigue. It was such a hike that it made the local newspaper!
After several months of working at the sheep station, David returned to his family home. Just as he was arriving the bailiff knocked on the door and told him that nothing had been paid on the farm in four years!
It's hard to picture but at the age of 14 David had negotiated his way around the bailiff and was able to buy more time, promising to make payment in full over the next few months.
He must have been a very smooth talker as the bailiff took his word for it and over the next few months the promise was fulfilled and the debt paid in full. Not a bad effort for a young lad when in the 1930's the best you could earn for your hard work was a pound a week!
Our 65 Miles Navy Strength Gin is a tribute to Granddad Jack's dedication, integrity and all-round hard arse nature. This navy-strength, full flavour, spiced Gin represents all of his adventures and the tough roads he travelled throughout his early years.
During the war Granddad Jack obtained his trotting licence. He purchased a racehorse named 'Sack Cloth' but it never did any good on the track. Instead, legend says that he purchased full size pencils, broke them in half, sharpened both ends and sold them individually for a penny each, more than doubling his money!
Our Two Pencils Gin represents just that. A perfectly balanced, juniper infused dry gin.
Granddad Jack was never one to miss an opportunity. One day he spotted a local barbershop standing empty. This was the beginning of what became a very long and respected career as the local barber. He ran a very successful business for forty-eight years, retiring at the age of seventy in 1989 where he was still only charging $4 per cut!
He may have been a hard arse but he was fair. This is the story behind our Barbershop Coffee Liqueur. Granddad Jack loved starting the day with a little extra 'oomph' in his coffee and what better way to pay homage to the man than to create a smooth and velvety coffee liqueur.
Granddad Jack lived a great life, full of memories and adventures which he loved to share with his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He passed away at the ripe old age of 93 and up until that point stood by his greatest reason for reaching an old age, "...a glass of fine whiskey a day keeps the doctors at bay". We're certain that he still carries on this tradition wherever he may be.
He loved sitting with friends and family in his backyard by the greenhouse, sipping whiskey and chatting all afternoon amongst his garden. This is what inspired us to create the recipe for our Greenhouse Gin, at 37% ABV it is a smooth, clean, botanical gin that you can make friends with.
Now his Grandson, David Ridden, and Great-Grandson, Luke Ridden, have continued his legacy by producing their very own take on Granddad Jack's whiskey series, an old family recipe that's been kept secret for close to 90 years.
A memorial card passed around to friends and family at his funeral perfectly summarised his time here on Earth:
"Like the Christchurch Cathedral, an icon has gone - a gentleman"