If you are a gin fan – and we at Spear’s are – here are some events you might like to attend
SIPSMITH GIN PALACE
Last year my mother decided that for her 60th birthday she wants a party in a gin palace where she can sing Bette Midler on karaoke. While this is still a few years away, it is wonderful to see that the Langham have stepped in to help and have launched their Sipsmith Gin Palace this week.
The general idea is that every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night you can sit in the opulence of the Palm Court, listen to live jazz, pretend you are a Downton lord and slosh back gin cocktails created by Sipsmith’s master distiller, Jared Brown, and the Langham’s head mixologist, Alex Kratena. Sounds rather splendid. In the spirit of investigative journalism, I decided this needed to be looked in to.
Behind red velvet curtains you’ll find yourself in a room of mirrors, candles and double basses. Anything from the Pink Panther to up-beat Coldplay is being performed by the live jazz band in the corner, which provides an entertaining soundtrack to the evening and something a little different from the usual cocktail bar diatribe.
Signature cocktails made with the Langham’s tea concentrated into a syrup with gin and champagne are served in delicate bone china teacups while something fantastic with a perfect hockey puck-shaped piece of ice was floating past on trays to neighbouring tables. The cocktails were delicate and not overly alcoholic, which makes a nice change and complemented the more grown-up feel of the place perfectly.
The Sipsmith Gin Palace is a lovely alternative to your usual evening haunt – sophisticated and elegant with a bustling atmosphere. We spent a thoroughly enjoyable evening here and that was without even seeing Justin Bieber, who was rumoured to be staying in the hotel.
Pictured above: A sexy cocktail at the Sipsmith Gin Palace at the Langham, London
BEEFEATER GIN TOURS
If you want to dust yourself in botanicals, lovingly cuddle huge cooper pots of soon to be gin and then drink some actual gin I strongly advise you look in to the Beefeater London gin tours during London Open House weekend (22/23 September).
The only gin to be magically created in the City of London, you will find the Beefeater distillery located in a lovely former Edwardian pickle factory. As part of the London Open House weekend – primarily an architectural showcase but one that allows you to snoop in buildings not generally open to the public – you will be able to book yourself on to a free tour and learn a little about the history, processes and how long you can prop up the Montford Bar for. Smashing.