First Gin and Rum Festival is huge success

Gin and Rum is enjoying an incredible renaissance and the growing popularity of the two spirits was plain to see when hundreds of people turned out for the first ever Gin and Rum Festival to be held in Hastings.

The event, on Saturday, was held in the Sussex South Coast College atrium, and coincided with World Gin Day.

Gin and Rum Festival, Hastings. SUS-180906-142346001

Gin and Rum Festival, Hastings. SUS-180906-142346001

Festival-goers queued in the sun to gain entry to the lunch-time session and rewarded with an impressive selection of gins and rums from all over the world.

Britain has seen the biggest rise in gin production since the juniper infused spirit, originally from Holland, because the drink of choice for Londoners in the early 18th century.

Many small distillers are based in rural areas of the country and make innovative use of local ingredients and botanicals to flavour the spirit, including everything from seaweed to honeysuckle flowers, lavender and birch sap.

The festival also had gins from Italy, America and France.

Gin enthusiasts were able to sample a pear and pink peppercorn infused gin a lemon drizzle gin and gins flavoured with strawberries and violets.

Local distiller Harley House had a stand showcasing their Seaford produced gin, which includes in its botanicals Frankincense and a flower found growing wild on the South Downs.

Rum was well represented including many varieties of the increasingly popular spiced varieties.

Festival-goers were entertained with live music and there were street food stands as well as drinks masterclasses.

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