I know, I know, this should've been a blog post about whiskey, but since I'm not much of a whiskey lover, my friend and I decided to take a tour at Edinburgh Gin instead.
I had pre-booked just before we had left for our weekend away in Edinburgh, which was a good idea as tours and experiences at this distillery sell out fast. We went on the Gin Discovery Tour which only costs a fiver and takes about an hour. There are other options as well, and even one experience where you get to distill your own gin.
Edinburgh Gin is located under a hotel. It's not only a distillery, but down the steps you'll find a small shop and, if you're not all that interested in a tour, you can pop in for a wee drink only.
When we arrived, we were ushered towards the waiting area, which had that men only club feel to it, with lots of leather armchairs and cosy corners. The tour kicked off with a very thorough explanation on the history of gin. And not an unimportant detail; you've got us Dutch to thank for this wonderful concoction.
Our lovely tour guide went on to explain what it is actually made of. And no, it is not just juniper berries. Apparently there is a lot more to it than that, and especially the Edinburgh Gin guys make a real effort to add all kinds of local herbs and roots, such as coriander, citrus peel, orris root, heather and milk thistle. We all got to smell little jars full of that.
Our tour continued into the room where it actually all happens. Here, two big copper machines spit out small batches of gin ever other day. Although apparently the stuff is getting too popular for its own shoes, they now have to expand and move the process to a larger space.
The tour ended with a glass of gin and tonic, which tasted absolutely refreshing and delightful, even if it was only 1pm.
We were tempted to buy one of the rhubarb flavoured gins, but damn those Ryanair luggage restrictions, so we had to leave empty handed. Although the shop girl informed us that Edinburgh Gin will be hitting the Waitrose shops real soon. I will keep on checking.