The Ice and a Slice team were invited to Wiltshire this weekend to hold an informal Gin Tasting for Nick's 30th Birthday. Lauren had arranged a fabulous celebration weekend away at the Barn Farmhouse for the group of 17.
We arrived at 2pm and having familiarised ourselves with the venue got straight into setting up for the tasting. 6 bottles of craft gins, chosen by Lauren, were lined up on the bar, the table was set with 4 tonics and mixers, garnishes, ice buckets, botanicals and glasses. Lauren and her friends had also prepared a delicious spread of antipasti for the group to enjoy alongside the gins.
In the drawing room on the central table, the tasting booklets were laid out and the welcome cocktail of 'Passion in the Ocean' was poured and garnished with a strawberry - everything was set!
Whilst the group enjoyed their Passion in the Ocean, we talked about gin and tonic, it's history and how they could get the best out of their tasting experience pairing the gin, tonics and garnishes together. With all the cocktails finished, the gin tasting commenced.
It didn't take long for the group to get into the swing of things and although we shared our recommendations, they were not held by these and seemed happy to experiment themselves on the matching of the gin, tonics, mixers and garnishes. One of the party, who was not a gin drinker, still took part tasting the tonics and mixers. He said that tonic was not really something that he had drunk in the past, but had enjoyed them so much, he would be including tonic on his list of drinks in future.
As the group came up for their fourth and final gin of the afternoon, we could tell that they were enjoying themselves - the laughter and volume in the room had definitely increased! We asked the party which gins and tonics they felt were their favourite combinations; Wight Mermaids gin and the Double Dutch, Cucumber and Watermelon mixer seemed to be very popular, along with Sir Robin of Locksley with 1724 and the Limbeck, New Western Style with the Double Dutch Skinny tonic.
As the group adjourned back into the drawing room and other areas of the house, we packed up our things, wished Nick a final 'Happy Birthday' and headed away. Another successful gin tasting!