He was presented with the award by the guild’s ‘Grand Rectifier’, Christopher Hayman of Hayman’s gin.
After 42 years of distilling, not just of gin but also whisky and vodka, Nichol is retiring.
Nichol said: “My role has been all the more rewarding because gin is the most complex spirit to distil. Receiving this accolade is a great honour and I am thrilled to share the celebrations with my industry peers at the Gin Industry annual dinner and The Gin Guild’s Spring Installation.”
The Gin Guild Spring Installation was the sixth installation since the organisation was set up in 2012 by the Worshipful Company of Distillers, with the aim of encouraging excellence in gin distillation, while promoting the category worldwide. A further 25 members joined the guild yesterday.
Guild director general Nicholas Cook said: “We have seen new members join from the UK and as far afield as the US and Spain. Among those installed were Joanne Moore from Greenall’s (Quintessential Brands) and Sarah Thompson of Blackdown Spirits."
Hayman’s term of office as grand rectifier finishes in October. He will be succeeded by Martin Riley from Chivas Brothers/Pernod Ricard.