Gin Festival London

29 August 2016

Gin Festival London is a once per year event. Filled to the brim with hundreds brands that bring in the crowds like a magpie to shiny things. This is a gin festival so if this drink isn't your cup of tea, then your probably not going to like it, but if your open to trying something new, I would definitely give this a go. I am a newbie to the gin crowd, so for me this was a perfect way to get stuck in.

When you first get to the festival you are given a booklet, a little bag which I found really useful to carry my glass in (if it wasn't in my hand which was 90% of the time), a pen and a sheet too add your details too if you wanted to purchase a bottle of your favourite after but not want to carry it home. We then headed to the tills where we each brought a card for £20 which gave us enough tokens for four drinks each. Off to the bar we went...

We were guided to a large room where four bars awaited us, each labelled from A-D. We found that each one had a rough theme to us based on the flavour notes given to us in the book, but it could have just been a coincidence. I personally found bar B was full of the strongest percentage ones and C full of spiced gins.  Deciding it would be a good strategy to try a drink from each bar we looked through our books to find one that took our fancy. The key flavours I was looking for were fruit and citrus as I find this helps to freshen the drink making it easier to consume. I already knew spiced gins weren't my thing so I stayed clear of those from the offset.

My first taste was from a brand called Brockmans, it was deliciously fruity with notes of blackberries, perfect with your standard tonic water. This was actually my favourite from the whole day and I will be purchasing a full bottle of it in the future. Now with each gin it tells you which tonic compliments it the best but after trying a few variations I noticed that the lemon and elderflower tonics overpower the gin flavour. If you were there to try the real flavours of the gin I would keep to standard tonic for this purpose. I personally LOVE elderflower in my gin so I was all over that and the lemon tonic made one of mine taste just like lemonade which was delicious and very easy to consume.

The are also food stands, (I tried an a-maz-ing nacho veggie burger with halloumi in - ugh dreamy) Live bands were playing in the bar, there was an outside area filled with deck chairs to sit with your favourites and enjoy the day. During the day I ended up consuming about six drinks and got quite merry from it. It was nice to forget the world and laugh at stupid things such as when I was explaining how people sniff their gins first for flavour and somehow managed to get a straw wedged up my nose.

It was a really lovely start to my bank holiday weekend and would highly recommend giving it a go next year. Are there any festivals you've been loving this year? Please let me know as I want to make a conscious effort to go to more in 2017.


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