Cornwall LivingIssue #122

Splice the mainbrace

Introducing Mainbrace: evoking, in a bottle, the very essence of the sea.

Mainbrace is a family-owned spirits brand based in Helford Passage, Cornwall. The idea for Mainbrace was born on a summer’s day, where a father and his sons were watching the local gig rowers celebrate a win after a race. Inspired by their surroundings and the spirit of courage, teamwork and friendship, they decided to bottle the moment by creating their own Cornish spirits company.

As a brand based in Cornwall, the sea is at the heart of everything Mainbrace does, inspiring the brand’s range of spirits, which include Mainbrace Premium Golden Rum, Mainbrace Navy Strength Rum, and the recently launched Mainbrace Cornish Dry Gin. 

When asked about the brand’s ethos, Richard Haigh, Co-Founder of Mainbrace, commented: “When launching Mainbrace Premium Golden Rum, we really wanted to put a modern spin on the traditional maritime aspect of rum to attract a new contemporary audience into the category. In doing so, we aim to evoke the essence of the sea and ethos of maritime life with every sip, encouraging people to come together to celebrate their victories, no matter how big or small.”

Unsurprisingly, the name Mainbrace itself hails from maritime traditions, born from the naval phrase ‘splice the mainbrace’. In the days of sail, the main mast of a ship was steadied, or braced, with a thick rope called the mainbrace. Due to its importance, it was often targeted by enemy fire in the heat of a battle, meaning that a brave team of sailors had to repair it by splicing the rope back together to save the ship. 

As a reward for successfully achieving this titanic task, the captain would order the ship’s purser to issue a double ration (or tot) of rum or gin to the brave team as a toast to victory. Today, the phrase ‘splice the mainbrace’ has inevitably become a naval euphemism for a celebration and is always accompanied by a toast to ‘the Queen – God bless her!’. 

The naval connections don’t stop there for Mainbrace, who continue to work with sustainable, transparent suppliers such as Flexi-Hex packaging, which allows the brand to contribute towards improving the health of the oceans. This year, Mainbrace will be supporting Clean Ocean Sailing, a charity that was founded with the aim of cleaning up the coasts and oceans sustainably under sail and raising awareness about ocean plastics.


Mainbrace Rum