Big Brother is offering you an artisan Orwellian island gin

Lusso’s limited edition Nineteen Eighty-Four gin

This summer marks the 75th anniversary of the publication of George Orwell’s famously dystopian book, Nineteen Eighty-Four.

But while that notorious novel centres on a grim imagined future where people live in vast city states controlled by totalitarian powers-that-be, it was actually written in Orwell’s remote rural retreat at the north end of the Isle of Jura, off the west coast of Scotland.

This is why the Lussa Gin Distillery – sited at Ardlussa at the north end of Jura – has created a special gin to mark the Orwell book’s anniversary, released in tandem with a Nineteen Eighty-Four art installation, by Edinburgh artist, Hans K Clausen, titled ‘The Winston Smith Library of Victory & Truth’.

Lussa Gin have collaborated with Clausen to create 1984 book shaped bottles, distilled with ten botanicals all inspired by Orwell’s life and work and with the seal of approval from Richard Blair, George Orwell’s son.

Each botanical tells a story connected to Orwell – they include bitter orange as he fought in the Spanish civil war; Jura roses as he loved growing roses; cardamon and coriander from India where he was born, and cloves – as used in ‘Victory Gin’, the totalitarian gin described in the book itself.

The Lussa Gin Distillery is run by three women, Georgina Kitching, Sofie Fletcher and Claire Fletcher, who gather and grow all fifteen botanicals for their signature gin from the island’s hills, gardens, woods and coastline.

They started the business in 2015 and have since converted an old stables to house their distillery.