The House of KI NO BI is a renovated traditional ‘machiya’ townhouse built over 100 years ago as a timber mill; the original interiors including earthen walls, beams and roof tiles have been retained to preserve the authentic ambience.
As with their gins, they have used local materials wherever possible for the House of KI NO BI, including handmade furniture by local craftsman Mr. Goda and a traditional Nishijin fabric company, Hosoo.
They are often asked why we chose to establish our craft distillery in Kyoto, as opposed to Tokyo or Osaka or Hokkaido, or numerous other locations that could feasibly have been contenders.
The simple answer is that it could only have been Kyoto; no other areas were ever seriously considered. It’s a subconscious feeling that this city and its proud history symbolize what they are trying to achieve with their gin. If the people of Kyoto can accept and welcome this new addition to the myriad list of arts and crafts produced in the city over the past thousand years and more, then they will have succeeded.
Not only does it feel like the right place to be producing such a craft product, but it also offers an abundance of raw materials with which to work-the soft waters of Fushimi, famed for the highest quality sake production for centuries, a huge selection of locally-grown ingredients, such as yuzu, sansho and the legendary teas of Uji.
Perhaps foremost though is the inspiration which living and working in this city provides, existing alongside businesses that have been crafting beautiful fabrics, pottery and paper for many hundreds of years.