4 weeks ago, I drank gin and bitter lemon. Then my life changed entirely.
Having been chained to a desk in a monotonous customer service job, I received confirmation I was starting a degree in creative writing in September. The prospect of a different life dawned on me so I began hunting for bar work that would be more fun and allow part time hours when the time came. Luckily, I found a job in a new bar ‘Gin and Olive’, on Albert Road, Southsea, which is a rather quirky area and one of my favourite parts of Portsmouth. I remember contemplating that it would be interesting to learn about gin, I did drink it after all. 4 weeks ago, we opened.
I used to say ‘I loved gin’. This was a lie. I realise now that I knew nothing of gin. I had no idea of the rich historical content, the overwhelming combination of botanicals and the thought and nurturing care given by the distiller that goes into each and every bottle.
As a gin bar, we currently stock 65 gins and this is ever growing through recommendations. As a specialist bar, it is paramount to have a thorough knowledge. With the fabulous opportunity of training in this exciting industry, aided by visits to distilleries as well as visits from the distillers themselves, I have been learning in earnest. A fire in my heart has been ignited and now my world is bathed in gin.
It’s still early days, but anyone can come aboard and join me. I’ll be meeting some of the finest artisan gin craftsman of our generation. Everything I learn in history, production and consumption will be shared on here and I’ll also be writing pieces on the distillers themselves. My thinking is: It’s taken my world by storm. Who else could fall in love as I have? Not only this, but it’s a rare opportunity to share the knowledge and experience as it find it and any extra info for me would be warmly welcomed.
So, whatever clear or coloured liquid is in your glass right now, prepare to open your mind to a whole bottle of wonder as we embark to new horizons on a journey of knowledge into the incredible world of gin.