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Gin is in the midst of something of a renaissance. It is increasing in popularity all the time, and is being embraced by the craft spirits market at the same time.
One of those craft distillers is City of London Gin Distillery, a company who have brought their passion for Gin into the Big City.
Of course, as many will know, Gin and London have an interlocked past. In the 18th Century, Gin houses became massively popular in the city, especially amongst the poor, in a movement that was known as the Gin Craze.
These were also the first places to allow men and women to drink together, which eventually lead to Gin being known as “mother’s ruin”.
Fast forward some 200 years, and Gin has a very different appeal. It is the new drink of choice for the millennial generation who are turning to it for its versatility.
Cue City of London Distillery, where Gin is being given a new lease of life for a new generation.
There hasn’t been a Gin distillery in London’s Square Mile since the Gin Craze and in 2012 City of London changed that.
They set up in Bride Lane, and have been thriving ever since. So far they have released a London Dry Gin, a Square Mile Gin, a popular Sloe Gin, an Old Tom Gin and a Gin in dedication to London architect Christopher Wren.
As well as these concoctions, they have also drawn crowds to their multiple experiences, one of which is the extraordinary Gin Lab.
This gives customers the chance to create and bottle their own Gin, using a variety of botanicals.
This is a great chance to not only get to know the distillery better, but also to get to understand Gin and what makes it so good.
The experience starts with a welcome and the chance to meet your tutor, who will guide you through the Gin making experience.
From here, you are given artistic license to craft and bottle your own Gin, using a variety of botanicals.
With as much or as little help as you need, your tutor will guide you through the process. Ultimately however, the Gin you make is completely up to you.
After you have designed your recipe you get the chance to operate your own mini still. This is very exciting, and part of you definitely feels like a true master distiller.
You make tastings through out choose when to make the cut, giving you complete control over your gin and how it tastes.
Finally, to wrap everything up nicely, you get the chance to choose from a number of label templates, or the option of making your own. This will then go on your very own 70cl bottle of Gin.
This is a great experience for both those who love Gin and those who know nothing about it. You learn so much and there is no greater reward for learning than being able to take home your very own Gin, hand crafted and distilled only by yourself.
The experience lasts around 2 hours and is definitely worth every minute.