Cape Town and its surroundings are famous for their wine and vineyards surrounded by beautiful mountains. But it’s not only wine that’s worth tasting when you’re in the Western Cape. When my mum was visiting last week, we decided for a completely new tasting experience.
As we are all suckers for Gin – my mum, my boyfriend and me – we decided to pay the distillery Hope on Hopkins a visit. This small distillery in Salt River – directly in the heart of Cape Town – is located in an old and renovated industrial building. The gins are made from scratch – and a lot of the ingredients are local.
A special destillery
The distillery only opened in 2014. They already have three signature gins on their list, as well as various gins they produce for others. They are all very unique in taste and character. To taste them, you have to make an appointment, as the distillery wants to give its visitors a more private tasting experience. Which is just awesome!
After ringing the bells, we got a warm welcome and got led up some small steps to the first floor. Here you can enjoy your gin tasting experience on a gallery overlooking the distillery. The tables are far enough away from each other to not get disturbed by other groups of people being in the room and the atmosphere is laid-back and hipstery.
The gin tasting experience
A testing consists of four gins in total. Their signature gins:
London Dry Gin
Salt River Gin and
as well as one of the Hope on Hopkins family gins that are produced for customers. They are served with tonic and a complimentary garnish fitting the flavours and character of the respective gin. The staff let you take your time to enjoy. We spent around two hours there, drinking gin, exploring different flavours, scratching Mr. Scruff the distillery dog and looking around.
The gins they served us were definitely something special. An explosion of flavours! I mean, who would ever try to taste some London Dry Gin with rosemary and lemon instead of the obligatory cucumber? And have you ever tried gin with cinnamon? It’s an epiphany! My definite favourite was their Mediterranean, a gin served with a leave of basil, infused with olives, rosemary, basil, thyme and cardamom. Unfortunately, you cannot buy it everywhere in store yet. The selected hotels, bars, restaurants and stockists are listed here.
Or you could just come and visit – it’s definitely worth it!