Last Saturday we attended Slingsby’s Gin Tasting Experience in Harrogate. Based in the heart of the town centre, overlooking the beautiful views of the stray you’ll find their ‘Spirit of Harrogate’ store. Slingsby’s offer three private tasting sessions from Wednesday to Saturday for 10- 16 guests (The Spirit of Gin, The Cocktail Master and Just The Tonic). Each including a range of activities from gin tasting from a selection of over 80 gins, mixology lessons, and a chance to learn about the history of gin in their bespoke venue.
We attended one of their ‘Open Sessions’, running alternate Friday evenings and Saturday afternoons for those who want to attend ‘The Spirit of Gin’ sessions but don’t have 10 or more guests. Their Slingsby Spirit of Harrogate store is a real treat of a place. Designed in the style of an apothecary store, selling the full range of Slingsby gins, alongside an abundance of tonics, mixers and local and internationally sourced botanicals. Absolute gin heaven!
With events taking place above the store in their bespoke mixology area we headed up to join the rest of the guests. Upon arriving we were advised to grab a seat before being handed a huge Slingsby ‘Signature Serve’ G&T – doubles are how it’s done, served with 200ml premium tonic and garnished with a twist of pink grapefruit, fresh blueberry’s and a good serving of ice. Great start! As advised on the website canapés are included in the event cost. Instead, guests were treated to a mouthwatering spread of delicious meats, cheeses, homemade quiches, sausage rolls with all the trimming from one of Harrogate’s finest deli’s, Weetons. There were 12 guests in our group but enough food for about 25! A perfect accompaniment for an afternoon of gin sampling.
Onto the history of gin next, we we’re advised how the different botanicals are added to create gin. The medicinal purposes of juniper and also the evolution of gin itself. From bathtub gin, navy strength and also the different eras of the Georgian and Victorian gin crazes, samples for all the different eras were served up with a few breaks in between to grab more food or a fresh gin cocktail – another favourite being the rhubarb gin. The organisers of the day kept the talk really fun and interactive, it felt like a real social event with everyone discussing their favourite drinks in a really relaxed and friendly atmosphere.
We even found out how tonic water evolved and how it came to be mixed with gin to make everyone’s favourite drink. For anyone that wasn’t so keen on gin generally the bar was fully stocked with a huge range of spirits, beers and wines. After our talk, it was onto our own cocktail making class. A classic Moscow Mule served with fresh lime, sugar syrup and ginger beer. I’d never thought ginger beer and gin would go together, a new favourite cocktail from now on!
Overall the course lasted about two and a half hours but the time absolutely flew by with the good humour of the organisers and the interactive way the event was set out. Every guest from the event was entitled to a discount in the shop downstairs so we couldn’t resist picking up a souvenir to re-create some of our favourite cocktails from the day.
I actually can’t think of a better event I’ve attended in a very long time. Everything from the venue, the drinks and also the friendly and knowledgeable staff made the day a real treat. Not to mention such a great location in the heart of one of Yorkshire’s best towns. If your looking for a perfect present for a friend or relative or even just a great day out for yourself then the Slignsby Gin Tasting Experience events have our official seal of approval!
For more info about The Slingsby Gin Experiences visit their page here
To book your place email firstname.lastname@example.org
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