The Gin Culture of London

On this page find out about gin culture of London

Unless you've lived under a rock in the last couple of years, chances are you've found that gin is the booze à la mode. Gin is undeniably popular, from gin tastings to gin distillery tours and even gin and tonic teabags. 

The numbers don't lie: in 2017, 43 million bottles of gin were sold in the UK alone, and there are now more than 100 gin-makers in the country – compared to only 37 in 2010. 

So why the boom? Well, besides the fact that gin is delicious, of course, there are five potential explanations for the gin craze: 

It has become more available

Availability of Gin

Traditionally, the HMRC had an issue with small-scale gin distilleries, making it almost difficult for new gin companies to succeed. But all this changed in 2009 when the fashionable West London gin distillery Sipsmith won a landmark two-year legal battle with the HMRC, granting distilleries the legal right to manufacture and sell gin in limited quantities. 

This opened the floodgates for independent gin-makers around the country to develop and put their own stamp on the gin industry. 

It's part of the cocktail culture

Cocktail Culture

Cocktails were once known to be either for the very wealthy or exclusively for the boozy nights out in the summer holidays. But much of this has changed in recent years, with cocktail menus being the standard in restaurants, bars and even pubs across the country. 

Gin blends perfectly into the cocktail culture, as any gin enthusiast knows its highly adaptable flavor makes it the ideal infusion for just about any cocktail. And sometimes only a splash is required to form a cocktail, making it an inexpensive addition to the cocktail scene. 

It's versatile and exciting

One of the best things about gin is that it's really flexible and very exciting. Depending on the way in which it is distilled and refined, it may have several different strengths, tones, and tastes. Gin's taste can also be quickly converted by applying a number of botanical infusions. Delicious common infusions include aniseed, orange peel, lavender, and vanilla pods. Gin tastings have been developed all over the UK, enabling guests to play with their own botanical gin creations. 

It's (almost!) guilt-free

Unlike caloric beer (they don't name it a beer belly for anything!), gin is shockingly low in calories. A gin shot has an average of 72 calories and considering that gin normally contains no less than 37% alcohol of ABV, you can get very satisfied with gin without having to risk your diet or a balanced lifestyle.

It's part of pop culture

Gin has been a part of British culture for a long time. Although the original 'gin craze' of the Victorian era was given a bad name and the liquor was called 'mother's ruin,' because the 20th-century gin was regularly depicted in pop culture as an effortlessly chic, sophisticated liquor. James Bond may be known for his vodka martinis, but in some of Fleming's books, you'll see Bond and numerous other characters order gin and tonics. You can also see gin appearing several times across episodes of Downton Abbey, further adding to its wide appeal. And let's not forget that Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II is a keen gin fan, and she's been seen several times enjoying the spirit.

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