The 6 best Cotswold gins and the 7 best spots to try them
Gin has a status and reputation to maintain. It’s the UK’s favourite drink and can easily surpass any seasonal cocktail fad. However, it’s possible that the people behind the scenes of the gin creation process love the product even more than we do. Their dedication and passion for the drink has seen numerous craft gin distilleries pop up all over the UK, causing its resurgence in popularity. The Cotswolds is certainly no exception, home to an intriguing array of distilleries and bars. Here’s our guide to the best that the Cotswolds has to offer in the world of gin and the giniuses that create the concoctions.
Six of the best Cotswold gins
The eponymous gin brand of the Cotswolds was founded in 2014 by Daniel Szor, a native New Yorker with a passion for all things gin and whisky. It’s only natural it’s our number one.
Crafted entirely at the Cotswold Distillery in Shipston-on-Stour, the Cotswolds Dry Gin is a firm favourite in the craft gin world, distilled with nine carefully selected botanicals: juniper, coriander seed, angelica root, Cotswold lavender, bay leaf, hand-peeled fresh lime, pink grapefruit zest, cardamom and black peppercorn. The resulting flavour is rich, delicious and abundant with essential oils. It was awarded ‘Best London Dry Gin’ at the World Gin Awards 2016, and now the distillery has expanded into gin essences and other flavoured gins.
After finding out from a distiller in 2012 that a gin with ginger as the predominant flavour hadn’t existed commercially for over 100 years, founder Richard Bamber set out on a journey of discovery that resulted in Brennen & Brown, the Cheltenham based distillery that produce a vast range of flavoured and special edition gins. If you’re looking for a truly immersive experience, Brennen & Brown offer fabulous and ginformative gin tasting evenings, as well as Lab Experiences for two where you can create your own bottle of gin. They are also in the process of building a Ginsperational Tasting Room to complement their experiences.
Why is the company called Brennen & Brown? They are Richard Bamber’s Grandmothers maiden names – two lovely ladies who enjoyed the odd G&T themselves!
3. Sibling Gin
Sibling Gin is an ultra-slick gin brand, distilled, bottled and sold at the Sibling Distillery in Charlton Kings, Cheltenham. Created by four siblings (whose parents run a micro-brewery next door), Sibling Gin is modern, forward-thinking and made with a real hands-on approach. From the canoe paddle-mashed sugar cane which comprises the base alcohol, to the freshly prepared fruits and botanicals, it has earnt its place in our list as one of those gins that is truly made with love and care. Every step of the process takes place in their state-of-the-art distillery, producing high-quality, fresh, modern and wonderful-tasting gins.
Sibling offer very popular distillery tours on specific dates, so it’s always worth keeping an eye on their website.
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4. Bath Gin
Located in one of Bath’s many beautiful Georgian buildings, the Bath Gin Company is Bath’s first gin distillery for over 250 years, since the Gin Acts of the 18th Century. They produce artisan flavours over their five-floor, self-proclaimed gin palace, with their adjoining Canary Gin Bar offering the perfect spot for a tipple or two.
Their classic gin is distilled using eleven botanicals, including bitter orange, kaffir lime leaf and English coriander. One of their most popular cocktails is made with their classic gin, called Wylde Flower. They routinely refresh their cocktails, so you are always guaranteed a new taste when you visit. How about a Jane’s Garden, as well?
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Heading to The Canary Gin bar this weekend? Request one of our personal favourites, ‘Jane’s Garden’. Its refreshing apple and fennel notes perfectly showcase our Cucumber and Jasmine Bath Gin. It also looks beautiful in our copa glasses, with mint and cucumber to garnish . . . #bathgin #gin #cucumber #bathdistillery #bath #somerset #city #cocktail #gincocktails #cocktailsofinstagram #distillery #localbusiness #local #drinkmoregin #drinks #drinkstagram #ginandtonic #ginclub #ginbar #ginoclock #artisan #bathgincompany
A trip to the Bath Botanical Gin Distillery and Herbal Apothecary is even more interesting than it sounds. A must-visit for gin lovers and flora lovers alike, the distillery is located in Widcombe, just across the river from the town centre. All gins, as well as the numerous other herbal products such as teas and elixirs, are made on site using fresh, natural ingredients that have been locally sourced and are often hand-picked.
If you’re not able to choose which to taste next – don’t worry. Tasters of the whole range are available to try – a truly unique gin experience!
At number six we have the 6 O’Clock Gin. Based in Thornbury, just outside of Bristol, 6 O’Clock Gin produce a stunning range of smooth gins that celebrate their Bristolian roots, from their classic London Dry in its iconic Bristol Blue Glass bottle to their ‘exquisitely engineered’ Brunel Edition.
Distillery tours are available to book online, with all guests offered at 6 O’Clock G&T at the beginning and plenty of samples along the way.
The name was inspired by their long-held family tradition of indulging in a G&T at 6 o’clock; a custom we are sure many gin-lovers still enjoy today.
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It’s the bank holiday weekend, what have you got planned and who are you spending it with? – This classic cocktail is the perfect accompaniment to a long weekend. Whether you’ve got friends over for the first BBQ of the year, you’ve just finished work and are in need of a little pick me up or you’ve finally got around to clearing out the attic and require a little light refreshment. – Follow the link in our profile for more information. – – – #6oclockgin #bristol #gin #londondry #cocktail #cocktailhour #drinkstagram #drinkoftheday #cocktails #spring #longweekend #bankholiday #friyay #potd #lemon #tomcollins #classiccocktails
Seven scenic spots for your Cotswold G&T
So now you know all about the best gins produced in the Cotswolds and outlying areas, but where’s the best place to enjoy a crisp G&T? Here are our top picks:
Top of the list is of course the home of the Cotswolds Dry Gin in Shipston-on-Stour, offering a shop, tasting room, café, distillery tour and gin blending masterclasses. Whichever you pick to enjoy your G&T, it’s a perfect day out.
Located on street level below the distillery at the Bath Gin Company, The Canary Gin Bar is an eclectic gin haven, with experienced mixologists on hand who have created all the favourite cocktails of ‘Gin Austen’. Alternatively, you can enjoy your gin from a teapot with your family and friends. There isn’t just the Bath Gin to try either – the Canary Gin Bar offers over 230 different types.
If you’ve ever wondered which bar in the world stocks the most gins, then let this be the answer to your question! This cosy bar was actually the first place in the Guinness Book of World Records for offering the greatest selection of gins on the planet. A 17th Century townhouse with over 400 types of gin, in the delightful town of Woodstock – you simply can’t go wrong.
Sitting just off the side of Selsley Common, The Bell is a beautiful pub with its very own gin bar, stocking local gins and all the favourites, as well as special gins from overseas depending on the owner’s latest travels! With over 70 varieties to try, we’re sure you’ll find the perfect tipple after a refreshing countryside walk.
Located just outside of the beautiful Cotswold town of Burford, The Maytime Inn is an elegant Cotswold pub specialising in gin. With over 100 different options and 12 different types of tonic water, it’s always gin time at The Maytime.
A sumptuously luxurious Cotswold Hotel, The Slaughters Manor’s decadent bar beckons gin-lovers from afar. Every G&T comes with a specially selected garnish, from a thyme and grapefruit twist to a rosemary and strawberry slice. You can be sure that your drink is served with a splash of opulence.
Located in Montpellier, the most stylish part of Cheltenham, John Gordons is an independent spirit merchant stocking a wonderful range of gins, sourced both locally and from around the world. Guests can browse the collection and then enjoy a glass or two over a bite to eat in the welcoming bar area, with the added option to purchase a bottle of your favourite tipple.
To complement your Cotswold G&T, we have a range of cottages in walking distance to some of our favourite distilleries and gin bars. Speak to one of our specialists today who can craft the perfect weekend for you. Cheers!