I guess you can put it down to the journalistic streak in me – I love to find out more about cool bods in the food and drink industry. I was lucky to be able to attend my first Gin Festival in Nottingham (see my original review here). There are Gin Festivals held all over the country. In fact, there is one this bank holiday weekend in Hull (click here for more information). I was chuffed to bits to chat with founders of the Gin Festival, Jym and Marie Harris.  Chin chin!

You’re a gin lover. When did you discover your love for gin?

I started drinking it around four years ago when I found a pub in Whitley Bay, selling 20 different gins with unique garnishes and brands that I’d never heard before. I was intrigued, had my first glass,and many more followed.

Do you have a particular favourite brand?

I wouldn’t say that I have a favourite brand, I come across too many to settle on just one! That said, my preferred style of gin is definitely Spanish. There’s a lot going on with Spanish gin, they really play around with non-traditional flavours, and the serves themselves are gorgeous!

What is your favourite way of drinking gin? Neat, or in a cocktail? If cocktail, please may I have the recipe to share with readers of my blog?

While I do appreciate a good gin cocktail, the best way to have gin is definitely a G&T! Especially one with a decent tonic water and the appropriate garnish.

How did the Gin Festival come about? How many years has it been running for?

We dreamt up Gin Festival back in 2012; Marie and I loved gin but every tasting session we attended and ‘gin bar’ we visited, left us disappointed – we wanted more! More interesting gins, more exciting gins, more knowledge and the right garnishes. With that in mind, we started Gin Festival!

Bringing in the best juniper-based spirits, the perfect serve and a wealth of (g)information (sorry for the pun), we found a whole host of fellow gin lovers to share it all out, and in the last couple of years, we’ve grown from strength to strength.

The Gin Festival is a wildly successful event, running across the country. How much forward planning goes into making this happen?

We have an amazing team of very busy events staff! They work incredibly hard back at our HQ as well as ensuring that everything runs smoothly over a festival.

What can festival goers expect to see at the Gin Festival next year?

Next year? Well, we’ll have the festival that you know and love with new gins, new brands and some more great entertainment. We have a few tricks up our sleeve too, so keep your eye on what we’re up to!

What is the best thing about doing what you do?

Without a doubt, this is a dream job! I spend my time working with something I’m passionate about, with a great team of people who I class as friends, real friends. It’s a little cheesy but we are like one, big family!

To find out more about the Gin Festival, hop onto their website www.ginfestival.com now.

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