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Arrival at The Distillery

On the day of your visit to The Ginstitute please get yourself to The Distillery at No.186 Portobello Road with plenty of time to spare before your session starts. Enter through the door on Talbot Road and you’ll arrive into The Distillery shop. Announce yourself to our shopkeeper and hand him your voucher. You’ll be directed downstairs for the first half of your visit.


Meet & Greet

Once all the guests have arrived downstairs you will be greeted by your Gin Instructor. Hopefully by this point you’ll have finished your first drink because their will be a Tom Collins ready and waiting. Your host will then explain to the group the format of the next few hours, if you’ve read this you can just ignore them.


A History Lesson in Gin

For the first hour of your session the Gin Instructor will take you through the long, and frequently miserable, history of gin. From the drinks origins as a medicine through the gin craze which gripped Britain for 200 years and onto the Golden Era of gin as a cocktail ingredient and finally how gin has taken its position in the modern world and the ‘ginaissance’ it is currently enjoying. Then it’s time for another gin and tonic, naturally, and a trip next door to The Still Room.


How Gin is Made

Once you’ve met King Henry, our illustrious 400L copper pot still and his diminutive roommate, Copernicus The Fourth (don’t ask about the other three), your gin instructor will explain to you the processes involved in creating gin and give a quick overview of the many rules and regulations which gin producers are obliged to abide. Then you will also be given a detailed explanation of how to go about choosing the various botanicals which are going to define the flavour of the gin you are about to create.


Getting to Know the Botanicals

Now it is time to get a little more hands on, and noses on as well, as you will be given a tutored tasting and nosing of the botanicals that are available to you, some will be familiar to you from the worlds of cuisine, perfume and confectionary, others less so. This is where you really get to understand the impact on your gin that the selection of these ingredients is going to have.


Crafting Your Own Gin

Having made your selections your Gin Instructor will now assist you in blending the various distilled botanicals together to create your completely unique recipe, a full bottle of this will be assembled which each guest of The Ginstitute is able to take home with them on the night. This recipe is also recorded on our database which means that additional bottles can be purchased via the website at any point in the future.



Once each of the guests present has created and received their blend of gin they will all be invited back downstairs for one last drink, usually a Martini if you’re feeling up to it, and we’ll also present you with a bottle of our personal blend to take away, which of course went on to become Portobello Road Gin.