Listoke offers tourists a gin-making experience in Drogheda, Ireland
Gin and spirit lovers will enjoy the Listoke gin school experience on the north side of Drogheda, Ireland, the first and only interactive gin making experience in the country.
Irish whisky is well know throughout the world, but Irish gin is beginning to make a name for itself as well. At Listoke Distillery, they make hand-crafted gin in small batches on the grounds of the historic Listoke Estate, which is in the heart of Boyne Valley (Drogheda) in Ireland’s Ancient East.
I’ve been to a number of distilleries, but I had never heard of, or participated in, a spirit making class. When I learned that Listoke Distillery had a gin-making school, I was intrigued. I’ve never been a gin drinker, but the idea of making my own bottle over a four-hour class was enticing.
The Listoke estate is really quite remarkable. The setting feels like a place where aristocrats would have spent time strolling the gardens many years ago. Today, the facility houses a coffee shop, the distillery, the owners quarters, and the gin-making school.
After being warmly greeted with a Gin and Tonic cocktail, students are given a tour of the distillery, while learning about the colorful history behind the brand. The school is housed in what once was the horse stables of the estate. Students are given three different gin flavor profiles to help them decide which style of gin they prefer most.
With over 50 dried and fresh botanicals to choose from, making the perfect bottle of gin requires an attention to detail, while listening intently to the instructions being provided, while also keeping copious notes of the ingredients and quantities used.
Once student’s have chosen their botanicals, they begin mixing the flavors and start the distillation process, within a miniature copper still located at each students station. By the end of the class, all students will have made their own unique 750ml bottle of gin.
During the distillation process, students then enjoy another Gin and Tonic while fresh baked bread and local foods are provided, which gives everyone a short break and a chance to mingle. Once the distillation process is completed, the students then measure the alcohol content. At this time, the master distiller will come around and taste everyone’s batch of gin, making notes as to who made the best bottle. There were prizes for the best bottle, as well as the best name. After the alcohol level is certified by the distiller, a bottle is filled, labeled, corked and then sealed.
If you’ve ever been to the Listoke Gin School, or have had a similar experience, please share by leaving a comment below.
Listoke Distillery and Gin School Information: