How to enjoy a gin festival

What do I need to know about attending Catford Gin Festival?

Whether you are a gin newbie or a good old gin veteran, there are always a few things to keep in mind before you head over to your gin event.

We’re sharing our tips on how to attend a gin festival safely and enjoyably with our experience from last year and the wise words of bloggers Inka Larissa of On The Sauce Again and Katie Hughes of ‘What’s Katie Doing?

1. Do your research
Reading about last years Catford Gin Festival is a good place to start. It is useful to read about the brands before the event as the experience can get overwhelming. There is no way you can manage, nor should you even try, to test all of them.
Therefore, it will be helpful to read about the event beforehand and decide if there are specific brands you most definitely want to try.
By doing your research you can take notes on the new and unusual gins you would like to try or see if there are any other rare gins you wish to sample. This way you can maximise your experience.

2. Remember the point of it all!
Many people come to these events with a plan to drink their money’s worth, but that is not the point at all. These events are actually a great way to learn more about gin and the ways to drink it along with the history of gin itself and about the unique life stories of each brand exhibiting.
The distillers and brand ambassadors have travelled to meet you, to tell you about their amazing products, so take advantage of this. Don’t be shy, ask questions!


3. Water is your BFF
Drink water! Take a break and hydrate – water and soft drinks keep the hangover away!

4. Eat
Gin festivals have food stalls for a good reason. Stopping and eating to avoid getting light-headed adds to the enjoyment of the day (and the next morning.) Food will soak up the alcohol and keep your energy levels going for longer. It’s also a great time to sample delicious local food and snacks. We will have a variety of food at each session serving a range of small dishes, larger meals and sweet treats. We will have vegan and gluten free options available.


5. Enjoy the atmosphere
Paying for the ticket doesn’t mean you should drink as much gin as possible. It means you have access to meet the makers and enjoy a moderate number of samples as well as enjoying the entertainment. We will have seating throughout the festival so get some food and take a seat and enjoy the music and atmosphere.


6. Take care of your glass
On arrival you will be handed your very own tasting glass, which you can take home as well as use on the day to sample the wide selection of gins exhibiting.
It is a good idea to rinse your glass occasionally for a better tasting experience. Some gins are more delicate than others and this way you will avoid mixing up the flavours of different gins.
Glasses should be handled with care to prevent them getting broken or chipped and they can be safely stored when not being used in the tote bag provided to prevent them being mixed up with anyone else’s.

The main message is to pace yourself! Drink water, eat regularly, listen and learn through seminars and talks, take part in master classes and take the time to talk to your fellow gin lovers. You don’t want to be the person who gets asked to leave…