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Get in the spirit for World Gin Day

Posted in FOOD + DRINK By Maggie O' Sullivan

Gin Experience at Chesterfield Mayfair, LondonNext Saturday is World Gin Day, a global celebration of all things gin, organised by a website called Gin Monkey. So if you haven’t ventured into the increasingly trendy world of ‘craft gins’ yet, now might be a good time to have a go. Here are five great places to start in the spiritual home of gin: London. Cheers.

The Chesterfield Mayfair, London W1

The Chesterfield Mayfair Gin & Tonic Experience (above) offers a choice of three tasting menus. Each includes three gins, demonstrating different attributes – floral, citrus, spicy or smooth – along with the chance to see, touch and smell 12 of the most common natural botanicals used to create the flavours. The gins are accompanied by a variety of tonic waters, chosen to enhance the spirit. Tasting No 1, for example, includes Berkeley Square and Fever Tree tonic with lavender; Beefeater and Fever Tree tonic with cardamom and Plymouth sloe gin. The Gin Bar at Holborn Dining Room, London RosewoodThe Gin Bar at Holborn Dining Room, WC1 

Holborn Dining Room at the London Rosewood hotel claims to have the largest selection of gin in the Capital, with more than 400 different varieties, from international brands to local craft gins. Once you have decided on your tipple, you must then choose a tonic: no easy task as there are 27 of them, including one made in-house to a secret recipe. Apparently, there are more than 14,035 possible pairings – that's a lifetime of G&Ts.Graphic Bar, London W1Graphic Bar, W1  

Not far behind Holborn Dining Room is Soho's Graphic Bar, which offers more than 300 different gins from ‘the four corners of the globe’. Once a month it organises a gin social to include a welcome G&T, a tasting of the Graphic gin of the month and a gin cocktail. Graphic serves its gin with ice and a slice of art, with installations by new and established artists.Bar at The Dorchester, LondonThe Dorchester, W1

The Dorchester pays homage to the G&T with a carefully chosen selection of gins and its own bespoke bitters. We recommend Old Tom, based on an 18th-century recipe and recreated exclusively by the City of London Distillery for The Dorchester. If you can’t make it to the hotel, you can buy The Dorchester Old Tom Gin online for £65 a bottle; UK only. Portobello Road ginPortobello Road Gin Hotel, W11

You’ll have to wait until later in the year to stay at London’s first gin hotel/distillery. Devised by the team behind the successful Portobello Road gin brand and a visitor experience called The Ginstitute, the four-storey building will include a gin museum, blending rooms, a Spanish-style ‘gintonic’ bar and restaurant, a specialist gin shop, distillery and boutique-style accommodation. Watch this space.

BY MAGGIE O'SULLIVAN

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