World Gin Day (Saturday 9th June) is approaching, so where better to celebrate gin than the Baltic Triangle! With gin popularity on the rise, I set out into Liverpool’s Baltic Triangle to source (and drink) the best gins the area has to offer.
1. H1780 Tap & Still
62-64 Bridgewater Street
H1780 Tap & Still is a bar, eatery and also home to the largest brewery In Liverpool with a 150-litre pot still behind the bar. You can visit the distillery yourself for a brief history of gin with tastings and makings along the way. Tickets are available here.
For a classic G&T, choose from the three gins made on site with singles from £6. All are served with German-made Thomas Henry tonic.
- Dry Gin 43% – this is made with lots of juniper and citrus like most gins, but the sea holly picked from Crosby beach is what sets it apart from others.
- Marshmallow Gin 40% – an Old Tom style gin with flavours from marshmallow and liquorice.
- Merchant Navy Gin 51% – this has Mexican vanilla and Japanese yuzu citrus because Liverpool is twinned with Japanese ports. It was made to celebrate that Liverpool has only merchant navies and no royal navy. This is the most popular of the three because it is the staff favourite.
Bring out your inner mixologist if you fancy something different: try a Tap & Still cocktail, made with their experimental edition gins. The most popular are the Tap & Still Club and a Bloody Mary, or a Ginsmith Spritz for more of a fizz.
2. The Botanical Garden
49 New Bird Street
Now that the sun has finally shown up and stayed in Liverpool, you should discover The Botanical Garden – an outdoor bar with a gin twist on a typical British beer garden.
The Garden makes their own gin slushies, currently bubble gum and passionfruit, and these are flying out this summer. For £6, these may be the best refreshing drink to help you relax in the heat.
I sampled brand new Turncoat Dragon Tears gin too which is infused with jasmine tea and named after the shape of blossoming jasmine.
If you are a lover of gin and history, we suggest you combine the two and try one (or both) of the following gin drinks.
Hartwall Original Long Drink – these cans of Finnish gin and grapefruit were created for the 1952 Helsinki Olympics to help bar staff serving visitors. Production continued even after the games and the drink could be considered the first alcopop in history. Still in original packaging and recipe, 5.5% “Gin in a tin” is sold at The Botanical Garden for £4.50.
Warner Edwards Victoria’s Rhubarb Gin also stands out on the Garden’s gin shelves. It is made using rhubarb originally grown in Buckingham’s Palace kitchen garden during the reign of Queen Victoria. It pairs perfectly with a ginger mixer.
For a customer who doesn’t know a lot about gin, general manager Laura recommends asking for a Tom Collins. This prohibition-style cocktail is made with gin, lemon, sugar and soda.
With it also being Negroni week, this classic is also up there on the recommendations. It’s made with equal parts of gin, sweet vermouth, Campari and garnished with a slice of orange.
They are catered for by Oktopus and have a variety of DJs who play their sets on Friday and Saturday nights, so you could easily spend the whole day here. The Garden also has an indoor bar and seating area with heaters for those rainy days.
Ideal for a summer’s day drink, The Botanical Garden is a place you’ll wish you visited earlier. They’re open every day from 12pm-11pm March-September. World Gin Day is always a hit here as it’s the only garden in Liverpool dedicated to gin. Be sure to check it out!
3. The Baltic Social
25-29 Parliament Street
Another stockist of local gins is The Baltic Social bar, found in the heart of the Baltic Triangle. Their most popular is Liverpool Gin, but they also have Wirral Gin which couldn’t be found anywhere else.
The Baltic Social have a new cocktail menu on their way but the current gin favourite is the Singapore sling made with gin and juices.
107 Stanhope Street
Dockleaf is the sister bar of The Botanical Garden and houses gin from around the British Isles. Two of the owners here at Dockleaf travel to Scotland and Ireland frequently and bring back different coastal gins from their visits. They currently have Galway and Isle of Harris Gin, both infused with local seaweed.
Dockleaf have created their own rhubarb gin by infusing house gin with rhubarb to be used in cocktails. Prices start at £7.50.
Staff recommendation? Monkey 47, also found nowhere else.
Head down to the Baltic Triangle this sunny weekend and let the fun be-gin!