The Gin revolution continues to build up momentum. New infusions, distilleries and festivals appear in the marketplace on a regular basis. Gin palaces pop up celebrating all things juniper and more.
As a lover of gin or someone who is just intrigued by this charismatic white spirit, there is no shortage of places to tickle your taste buds with what started out as a herbal medicine.
Enter The Gin Festival, more accurately husband wife team Jym and Marie who turned their love of gin into a travelling showcase. Scattered around the UK, you will find pop up events showcasing new and lessor known brands which is a positive thing as they work to penetrate the mainstream marketplace. These events are twofold; support the independents and expose new audiences to gin. Of course, there is ancillary activity with food, live music and master classes to bulk out the event, all in all, a decent evening out.
I went to the London event at the fitting Tobacco Dock. This is a great spot, next to a canal with outdoor deckchairs to relax and enjoy your tipple over ice. Granted the views were just the apartments blocks across the way, but it was tranquil, warm with mega sunshine rays making you feel like you were you’re in the med.
There was a large queue when we arrived at 7pm, but it moved quite swiftly along. Inside the venue it was really warm; the glass ceilings led to a greenhouse feel which was the only downer of the experience. Some of the areas were luckily furnished with industrial size air conditioning units.
The first room we went into had a selection of three brands to taste then there was the Gin Master class room which scheduled sessions. In the Island, you could sample more products that led you on to the main bit.
Food trucks to the rear, enter another main room and you came across main bars where the real sexy stuff was housed. Each area specialised in local, international, infused and traditional brands. With your drinks ticket (purchased on entrance), you could use a stamp per drink, or two for a cocktail. The knowledgeable bar team talked you through the different blends and made their suggestions based on your desire, quite the profesh set-up.
The London event took place in August, but check out their website for events as they roam around the UK bringing gingoodness and hopefully you get a free gorgeous gin glass too!