After several decades of homebrewing beer, with occasional ventures into making wine (from ingredients gathered from gardens and hedgerows), it was possibly an obvious choice to jump on the craft beer/real ale bandwagon when I was offered voluntary redundancy, but for me it was and still is very much a leap of faith.
Looking for a new career that did not involve travelling long distances every week and being away from home more often than not, there was much to recommend a venture into the brewing industry. Research showed that while Edinburgh had a couple of dozen small local breweries, there were precious few around Glasgow.
Having had many friends praise the quality of my homebrewed beer, saying they would happily pay for a pint if it was being served in a pub, I started refining two of my favourite recipes in anticipation of ‘going commercial’. These received good reviews in focus groups and tasting sessions and were eventually chosen as launch candidates, Drop & Drift.
We chose the name Jaw Brew because ‘The Jaw’ is the name of the cottage where we live – a miller’s cottage built as far as we know in the early 1700s. The origins of the name are lost in the mists of time, but while researching we discovered that the word ‘Jaw’ in ancient Scots means ‘a wave or rush of water’ or else ‘to pour’. We found a reference to this in ‘The Poems of the Sempills of Beltrees’, circa 1706, which reads “Wha’ll jaw ale on my drouthy tongue?” – and that pretty well sealed the name for us.
Our logo is composed of a wave – one meaning of Jaw – within a representation of a whale’s jawbone arch, like the one that can be seen at Bragar on the Isle of Lewis.
Mark and Alison met in London but their roots are firmly planted in Scotland. Mark was born in Lerwick and Alison’s parents both hail from Glasgow although Alison’s Mum’s parents moved to Glasgow from the Isle of Mull. Mark’s Mum is from Stornoway. They moved here in 1998 from Munich to bring up their children in the beautiful loch-side setting of The Jaw which is situated on Bardowie Loch.
This is the setting for Mark and Alison’s latest venture – Hazell & Hazell Bardowie Gin – www.hazellandhazell.com a wonderful London Dry style Scottish Craft gin
All our design work is produced by Mark’s brother, Guy Hazell, a Graphic Designer based in Rome, Italy. Thanks Guy for all your work.