This autumn has seen the launch of a fantastic new gin-making experience, from the founder of Winchester Distillery and based in the heart of the Hampshire town. I’ve been along to photograph both the launch party, and a full gin-blending session – learning a fair bit along the way, about the history of gin, its renaissance right now, and seeing how Master Blender Paul Bowler is able to guide attendees in achieving a perfectly balanced set of flavours to create their own unique gin. Once you’ve been guided through some taste samples, and worked out the flavour direction you’re interested in, you set of to nose some of the distillates of flowers, herbs, fruits and roots among the shelves of the ‘Blending Library’. You’re then let loose amongst the botanicals, measuring tube at the ready to concoct your own juniper-based recipe – and you get to take home your own full-sized bottle with personalised label, to enjoy your one-of-a-kind gin at your leisure. Not only that, but your unique flavour ratios are kept on file by The Blend Academy so that you can reorder your personal gin blend again in the future.
A selection of these photos have featured in the society pages of Hampshire Life and in the winter edition of the Winchester Magazine.
If you are quick, you can enter into this competition courtesy of Hampshire Life, to win a blend-your-own gin experience for two: WIN.