Our OriGIN Story

In the beginning.jpg

That drunken Friday night

It all started on a drunken Friday night. It’s become our default story starter – because it’s true. This idea all began when we were sat at home in South Norwood, Croydon, enjoying a few drinks. We were sipping our go-tos, red wine and a disaronno and coke.

As the hunger inevitably crept upon us, we started thinking food. In South Norwood, there was often a drifting scent of bbq floating around the air, the big oil drum barbeques firing and smoking and filling our nostrils and minds with dreams of tandoori food. GOOD tandoori food. Now we were starving.

So naturally, we began to talk about food. Food we’d eaten recently, food we’d eaten in the 80’s, food that we wanted to eat that night. We went online and sifted through the options. We’d tried a few already, and they hadn’t impressed us. They’d been sad excuses for Indian food, and we were craving a bit of quality, something reminiscent of what we’d eaten as kids. We made the order and sat back and waited, hoping that this one would restore a bit of faith. A few more drinks later and the doorbell rang.

The poor delivery man must have been able to read the disappointment on our faces as he stood there with the big cardboard box with branding that we recognised. Our hearts sank. We’d ordered from here before. This may be sounding somewhat melodramatic, but trust us, the takeaways we had been experiencing of late hadn’t been ones that we wanted to repeat. And unfortunately, it was only going to get worse. We took the small plastic boxes outside of their bigger cardboard box, which seemed to be the latest packaging trend. The first thing we saw was a bit of sad, wilted coriander stuck to the lid of the box. You know when the box has become all sweaty and full of condensation... Not a good sign.

We just couldn’t believe how low the standard of Indian food had become. Surely people were not thinking that this was the way it was meant to be! We hoped not. Growing up in Britain and being of Indian descent, the food we had eaten at home had been a real mix of both cultures. Think tarka baked beans and spam curry (hyperlink to recipes). We had been fed good Indian food, made with ingredients that were inexpensive, so why were the local takeaways  struggling so much?

We carried on drinking and chatting, and with the food of our childhood in our minds, started to wonder why there had never been much experimentation when it came to drinks. The Indian drinks that came to mind were chai (or cha as we would call it) and lassi, and these had never been tampered with, never infused with any element of British culture by our families. Lassi felt more representative of us, and we realised that less people were familiar with it than chai.

So we asked ourselves, if our only limit was our imaginations, what experimental drink would we create? Lassi is an iconic Indian staple which has been drank in our families for generations, and we thought it would be great if we could fuse this with alcohol. This way, the drink would be a true representation of us, enjoying a drink on a Friday night as much as the next person. It ought to be mentioned that this experimental spirit within us had been inspired by a recent obsession with Masterchef Australia. It had been Heston week, and we think that we had been subconsciously influenced by his inventiveness. We began thinking about how cool it would be to create a drink that would defy people’s preconceptions. Lassi is made from yoghurt, but could we make it clear?

Our tipsy minds were running away with us, and we decided to call it a night. The funny and most amazing thing about this idea, is that when we woke up the next morning  it didn’t sound ridiculous… this was something we wanted to pursue. And so the idea of Crazy Gin was conceived!

If you like the sound of our creation, you can find out more about what goes into it and how we make it here, and can buy a bottle here.

Our storyNaomi Spence