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BOMBAY SAPPHIRE DISTILLERY
Laverstoke Mill, Hampshire, RG28 7NR
Bombay Sapphire, distilled: On the banks of the River Test, a once
industrious paper mill that produced banknotes has been given a
new lease of life as the Bombay Sapphire distillery. You can take a
self-guided tour with a map, and neat little speakers dotted around
the buildings tell you what you're seeing. The crowning glory is two
glasshouses, designed by London 2012 Olympic cauldron designer
Thomas Heatherwick. One houses tropical botanicals and the other is
home to Mediterranean botanicals - and both are heated by hot water
from the stills. You can go in and have a closer look at what makes gin
tick. In the botanical room, you can sni, touch and even taste Bombay's
dried botanicals and map your avour preferences - very handy when it
comes to choosing the right cocktail.
Bit on the side: This picturesque stretch of the river is home to all kinds
of wildlife and you can see brown trout enjoying clear water, as well as
rare birds and, at dusk, the odd bat emerging from the distillery's own
bat boxes. If y shing is your thing, it is available, but you'll need deep
pockets because it costs almost £4,000 a season.
How much: £22, including a cocktail or a takeaway G�T for drivers.
Stay over: Enjoy your takeaway G�T in a hot tub next to your log cabin
at nearby Blackwood Forest. forestholidays.co.uk
ADNAMSSole Bay Brewery, Southwold, Suolk, IP18 6JW
Adnams, distilled: If you're a fan of beer and spirits, this is the one-stop
shop for you. Behind the Victorian walls lies a modern brewery, and on
a one-hour tour you can learn how beer is made. For us, the following
30 minutes is the best bit - a tutored tasting of the brewery's beers.
See if you can try Spindrift, it really is a gem among beers. The distillery
tour follows the same format and Adnams makes all kinds of tipples,
from whisky and vodka to triple sec orange liqueur and even absinthe.
If you're a gin fan, though, we recommend upgrading your experience
to the Make Your Own Gin package. As well as the tour, it includes
an expert masterclass on making your own gin - from picking the
botanicals to coming up with a name and label - and you get to take
a 70cl bottle of it home.
Bit on the side: There's no need to stare enviously at those famous
coloured beach huts dotted along the coast: you can rent one. For
about £200 a week, you can be one of those smug beach hut owners,
enjoying your newly created gin avec tonic from your very own deck
How much: £12, brewery; £70, Make Your Own Gin experience.
Stay over: Keep it in the company at The Crown - Adnams' bijou hotel
with well-stocked bar, naturally. adnams.co.uk/hotels/the-crown
BOLNEY WINE ESTATE
Bolney, West Sussex, RH17 5NB
Bolney, distilled: Although English wine seems like a relatively new
thing, this vineyard has been going since the early 70s. Today, it's home
to almost 40 acres of vines and it specialises in red wine. Remember,
two of the three grape varieties used to make Champagne are red -
so expect to see similar sparkling wines here, as well as still reds and
whites. It's best to make an afternoon of your visit and no afternoon is
Clockwise, from top: glasshouses of botanicals
at the Bombay Sapphire distillery; Adnams
brewery; the Penderyn Distillery; on the beach
in Southwold; Bolney Wine Estate vineyard