From Beefeater London to Silent Pool, here are some of our favourite gin distilleries in Britain
With the number of gin distilleries in Britain more than doubling since 2010, it’s clear that gin is back in fashion. So plan a visit to one of the most respected gin houses in Britain.
Is there an alcoholic drink more quintessentially British than a gin and tonic? Named after the Tower of London’s Yeoman Guards, Beefeater London dry gin remains a world favourite to this day.
A visit to the Kennington distillery reveals a gin hand-crafted to a recipe unchanged since the 1800s, while a one-hour self-guided tour through the interactive exhibits tells the interesting history of the drink in London, before a guide will lead you through the heart of the distillery and the production processes. Smell and touch the botanicals that make this gin so unique while you sample a carefully crafted Beefeater G&T. www.beefeaterdistillery.com
Located on the Duke of Northumberland’s Albury Estate in Surrey, the legendary spring waters of Silent Pool give this eponymous label its name. Silent Pool Distillers specialises in small-batch artisan vodka and gin made using the pure water of the pool, which imparts a clean, crisp lightness to their drops. The stunning location is just one reason to visit but the 90-minute deep-dive gin tour explores the story of the pool and the distillation methods while you can taste the range, including their gin-based fruit cordials made using local produce.
Originally opened in 2009 in a tiny shop in Hammersmith, Sipsmith is the first traditional copper distillery in London since 1820. Bringing traditional methods back to the city, the small-batch gin is created each day by master distillers. A visit to the London distillery, now in Chiswick, includes an introduction to the copper stills, plus a tutored tasting. True aficionados can join the Sipsmith Sipping Society, which includes four bottles of their current favourite gins sent to members quarterly. High on the must-try list is the London Cup: Sipsmith’s award-winning London Dry Gin infused with Earl Grey tea, lemon verbena and other botanicals.
Launched in 1999, Martin Miller’s Gin may be less well-known than Beefeater or Sipsmith but this award-winning distilled English gin is blended with pure highly-oxygenated Icelandic water and should be on everyone’s list. While the original gin is made with 10 botanicals including juniper, coriander, orange and lemon peel, nutmeg and cucumber distillate, the more unusual 9 Moons is a delicious barrel-aged gin with a slight vanilla sweetness that needs to be sampled to be believed.