An artisan rum distillery is celebrating being shortlisted for another drinks award as the business continues to grow.

Goldstone Rum is in the running for the People’s Choice Drink Awards in the “local heroes” category for its overproof variety of the spirit.

It comes as the distillery, whose products are stocked in pubs and bars across Sussex, looks to grow across the country.

Georgina Bowell, who owns the distillery with her husband John, said: “It’s really nice to be recognised when we are a small, Sussex-born business that’s just over a year old.

“It’s amazing having our rum on the menu at pubs near us and selecting it for a cocktail.

“It makes us excited and makes us want to keep going and doing what we are doing.”

Having produced their first batches of white rum in December 2022, the family-run company has since branched out to dark rum to meet consumer demand.

The distillery, in Henfield, also has a number of flavoured rums including ginger and lime and coffee-flavoured varieties.

John and Georgina say they are among the first producers creating the traditionally Caribbean spirit in Britain.

They said the creativity with flavours that rum regulations allow was one of the reasons they chose to focus on the spirit so they could “play around and have a lot of fun” with it.

The Argus: John and Georgina BowellJohn and Georgina Bowell (Image: Goldstone Rum)

Georgina said straying from traditional methods of creating rum also allowed them to benefit from the latest distilling technologies to get the most flavour from their drink.

She added: “We are really at the beginning stages of British rum. It’s that mindset shift that we can make rum really well in the UK.

“We still need to change people’s perceptions. A lot of people are still hooked on Caribbean rum but now we are really playing up there and giving the best rums a run for their money.”

Goldstone Rum’s overproof variety is competing in the People’s Choice Drink Awards in the local heroes category and is up against other artisan rums from Salford, Portsmouth and Anglesey.

The winner is decided by a mixture of public judges and judges from within the spirits trade.

The awards ceremony will take place on February 27.