So you might have seen that I was VERY excited to be at the Bristol Gin Festival this weekend. I’ve been wanting to go for a couple of years but tickets tend to sell out rapidly and I’m always about a week to slow so when I was invited by Gin Explorers I jumped at the chance.
Not entirely sure what to expect I dragged John along with me to act as chief photographer and driver whilst I was in charge of sampling the goods.
We were warmly welcomed at the door and in exchange for our tickets we were given a large glass, badge, pen and a book FULL of information on the 150 gin that were on offer. In order to buy a drink you had to buy tokens which were £5 each. As I knew I was going to be the only one drinking, we had 3 tokens between us.
The gins were split into 3 bar areas – British, International and Flavoured / Sloe varieties.
It’s only in the last 18 months that I’ve discovered gin but am really limited in knowledge – the only thing I do know is that I don’t like slimline tonic with it!
There were a few gin companies there to explain their products and allow you to have a sample or two – these included Adnams, Masons, Pinkster (flavoured with raspberry – yum!), Whitley Neil, Locksley and Brockmans. The company that invited me, Gin Explorers, also had a stand -they do a monthly subscription box containing 4 different gins, a tonic and another little goodie to delivered to your door. Gin Explorers are a spin off company from the folk who bought you the Gin Festival.
Feeling slightly overwhelmed by the shear volume of choice I decided to play it safe with Edinburgh Gin Elderflower Liqueur which was a great first tasting! You could drink it neat (which was thick & sweet but delicious) or opt to have it topped with tonic water which I did. Fever-Tree tonic were the sponsors for the evening and provided a whole host of mixers.
John had to choose wisely as the driver and could only have one so he went for a Braeckman Hazelnut Jenever Gin which was to be drunk neat. It was creamy and nutty and reminded us of an after drink especially around Christmas.
After flicking through the guidebook and still being non the wiser I decided to make my final drink of the evening Whittakers Gin made in Harrogate. My decision was based on the fact that Whittaker is my Mum and Step-Dad’s surname…a very technical thought process here! This gin was garnished with thyme & juniper (garnishing is a whole other level of intricacy!) I have to say this wasn’t my favourite of the evening as it was REALLY dry.
The event was really busy, great fun and really well laid out. Have a look at the Gin Festival website to see if there’s one coming up near you and get yourself a ticket or two!!
Three cheers for the Gin Festival!!
Sadly GinFestival have gone into administration but you can find your nearest gin festivals at https://www.eatdrinkseek.co.
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