Today, Royal Nolet Distllery is the oldest distillery in Holland that is still in the hands of the founding family, a testament to the strength of the Nolet family and their passion for distilling. Founded in 1691 in Schiedam, Royal Nolet Distllery has remained a prominent fixture in the city’s distilling history, surviving throughout the French Revolution and two World Wars. The distillery has been exporting spirits to the United States since the late 19th century.
Over 325 Years
NOLET’S Finest Gins are the reflection of a rich heritage that dates back more than 325 years. Since 1691, when Joannes Nolet founded his distillery in Schiedam, Holland, members of the Nolet family have been perfecting the craft of distilling spirits and passing down their expertise from generation to generation and from father to son.
The Nolet Family Legacy 10th Generation
The Nolet family tradition of distilling spirits continues today through tenth generation owner Carolus Nolet, Sr., whose passion for this craft inspired him to create two gins of unparalleled distinction for the 21st century.
Through NOLET’S Silver and NOLET’S Reserve, gin drinkers can experience the family’s vast history combined with Carolus’ own personal tastes and preferences.
Carolus Henricus Joannes
As tenth generation owner and current day head of the Nolet family, Carolus fell deeply in love with the art of distilling. He introduced Ketel One® Vodka to America in 1983 and set up a sales and marketing operation there, though unlike his grandfather, he decided to remain in Schiedam. His passion for spirits is evident in the forty years it took him to craft a brand so close to his heart, NOLET’S Finest Gins.
Paulus Maria Antonius
Despite the shifting economic markets and the misfortune that Holland suffered during World War II, the Nolet Distillery survived under Paulus’ leadership. Of the 40 distillers in Schiedam that were still up and running after the war, only four remained – and Nolet Distillery was one of them. Like his predecessors, Paulus was able to pass on his family business to his son, Carolus.
Joannes Albertus Jacobus
With Nolet’s specially prepared and aged distillates known around the world, Joannes decided to set up a distillery on the shores of Baltimore, Maryland USA, to best serve his American customers. Unfortunately, the Prohibition disrupted the success of the distillery and forced it to close, at which point Joannes returned to Schiedam.
Jacobus Joannes Gerardus
In a time of increasing industrialization, Jacobus kept his family’s business rooted in artisanship by staying true to traditional distilling methods. He did, however, reap the benefits that industrialization brought by investing heavily in steam-powered equipment that simplified production at the distillery.
Joannes Albertus Jacobus
Joannes is credited with purchasing the land on which the current day Nolet Distillery is situated. It was a profitable move, as was his decision to buy several more shares in Schiedam windmills to ensure the centuries-old trade would safely grow.
The authoritative, dedicated Jacobus kept the Nolet brand moving forward despite the trials of the French Revolution. Like his father, Jacobus proved his versatility by growing the company while also admirably serving the townspeople as a doctor.
Not only did fourth generation Joannes Nolet carry on the tradition of distiller, but he also became the Mayor of Schiedam. The company continued to thrive under his leadership and barrels of Nolet spirits left the city daily.
Nolet Distillery gained even more acclaim under the leadership of third generation owner Joannes Nolet. His efforts to further expand the business included renovating the distillery to make room for additional equipment and improving the distillery’s infrastructure to ensure better access to water needed for distillation.
Inheriting Nolet Distillery from his father Joannes, Jacobus expanded the business to serve its increasingly loyal clientele. By purchasing a flourmill in 1735, the hardworking Jacobus ensured that the distillery always had wheat at its disposal for distillation.
Jan Lucasse (Joannes)
As founder of Nolet Distillery in Schiedam, Holland, Joannes was a visionary responsible for launching a remarkable family business and for passing his skills onto his son, in turn establishing what would become a rich family legacy.