If you know me, then you’ll know I’m a big fan of gin. So, I was excited to find out that one of the big brands, Bombay Sapphire, have their distillery not a million miles away from home. The Bombay Sapphire Gin Distillery is located at Laverstoke Mill near Whitchurch, in the heart of Hampshire. This working distillery host some amazing experiences which you can buy and book online, and we were lucky enough to be bought the Gin Cocktail Masterclass experience as a gift.
The experience included:
- Cocktail Masterclass: 1 hour interactive session with the opportunity to learn and create cocktails with specially-trained Gin Experts.
- Tour: Discovery experience with audio points and 15-minute guided tour of the Dakin Still House.
- Complimentary drink in the Mill Bar.
The Cocktail Masterclass was a brilliant experience and we really learnt a lot about the art of cocktail-making. There was a lot of laughter and interactivity, and we had the opportunity to make (and taste!) three classic cocktails.
A true focal point of the Bombay Sapphire Distillery is the beautiful glasshouse that sits above the River Test. This glasshouse is home to the botanical ingredients that are used in Bombay Sapphire Gin. If you’re lucky, you may even come across one of their iconic blue butterflies!
As you go through the tour, you’ll get chance to visit The Gallery, which provides a fascinating insight into the history of Bombay Sapphire, including a display of their branding and gin bottles through the ages.
Botanical Dry Room
Another great place to explore is the Botanical Dry Room, where you can go around and smell a variety of botanicals. The staff will provide you with a card featuring all the aromas, so you can make a note of your favourites, which the bartenders will then use to make a recommendation on a cocktail to suit your taste.
Dakin Still House
Once finished in the Botanical Dry Room, you’ll be called in for the 15-minute guided tour of the Dakin Still House. Here you’ll get to know the process of making the world-class Bombay Sapphire Gin using those grand copper stills.
The Mill Bar
Finally, once you’ve completed the tour, you are treated to a complimentary drink in the Mill Bar. Our absolute all-time favourite cocktail was The Laverstoke, which contained Bombay Sapphire Gin, St Germain (Elderflower Liqueur) and Martini Bianco, topped with ginger ale and garnished with fresh ginger and a sprig of mint. We’ve re-created this several times at home – it’s delicious!
If you’re looking for a gift for a well-known gin lover or simply a different kind of day out, I’d definitely recommend visiting the Bombay Sapphire Gin Distillery. They even run their own shuttle bus service to the local train stations, so you can drink as much as you like – trust me, it’ll be hard to resist!