“Gin-cident”: a negative experience with gin; usually as a result of inferior juniper berries used in the production of gin. Or by being a stupid teenager.
I’ve had one, and I’ll bet you’ve had one too.
I’ll admit it; a few weeks ago, I did not have a very good opinion of gin. I thought it tasted a lot like pinecones and made me want to yak. I was the victim of a gincident. So when I opened up my inbox to find an invitation to an exclusive Bombay Sapphire Gin event from their PR agency, I was a little skeptical.
However I like to think that I have an open mind, so I accepted the invitation in the hopes that I had matured enough to appreciate the unique flavour of this spirit. I love exploring alcohol and had done a tasting and review of Ketel One Vodka in the months previous; I was ready for another round. (Note to PR companies: Send me stuff or invite me out! You won’t be disappointed!)
The venue was the very well-appointed childhood home of Ted Rogers Sr., inventor of the Rogers Batteryless and founder of the Toronto radio station CFRB. We were treated to a variety of gin-based cocktails and tasty hors d’oeuvres by some friendly waitstaff as we mingled in the kitchen and backyard.
I brought my new friend Eve with me to this event, in an effort to bond with her over copious amounts of booze and also to introduce her to that glamourous ad world/blogger lifestyle I like to brag about so much (needless to say she was suitably impressed! hehe).
Once for a change I didn’t know anyone at this event, so I was able to start fresh and maintain my blogger anonymity! Errr… rather just keep my work life a social life separate, I suppose. Eve and I mostly stuck together that evening, but I made friends with the British mixologist and brand ambassador Merlin Griffiths, whom I had previously arranged via Twitter to do a cocktail demonstration with that evening. (That’s right! Ginger gettin’ up there and all famous in the house!)
Long story short, I sampled most of the cocktails on offer, which included my namesake, my favourite of the night, and the always-classy:
- Sapphire Ginger-Mint
- Sapphire (Tom) Collins
- Gin Martini
About an hour into the event we were ushered into the totally dope kitchen area for some cocktail-creation demonstrations, as well as some tips and tricks from a professional caterer on how to entertain at home.
First on the menu: Ginger & Merlin demonstrating the art of the Sapphire Collins! Yes my friends, I got up there like the attention whore I am and showed the world how to do it right, with Merlin guiding me along. I even squeezed the lemon myself! (The photo is Merlin showing us the right and wrong way of making a gin martini)
Ha! You thought you’d actually see me, eh? Maybe in the future, but not this time, my friends! however that is a great little instructional video I will be using to jog my memory for all the BBQ’s I’m going to host this summer…
Anyway, the night went along swimmingly with the help of some more Sapphire Collins’ and the good company of my fellow Toronto bloggers. We learned how to make a bunch of drinks that night, as well as a few cool centrepieces and quick meals for dinner parties. Below you’ll see a half-eaten (so classy, I know) charcuterie plate and a delicious Sapphire Collins.
I think by this point you’ve realized that I have started to actually enjoy gin–when applied properly, of course! I’m really glad I got out to this event; not only did I have a great time with Eve, I also learned a lot about gin and met some of the local Toronto bloggers! Bombay Sapphire gin is definitely on my list for booze-I-need-to-purchase, especially now that I know how to use it. And because it has cool “botanicals” in it (top photo). I like herb-y things!
I was a bit of the odd-man-out however, as I did not possess any business cards! Anyone wanna hook me up with some of those free ones uPrinting.com has been giving away? If I keep going to more of these events I might as well advertise my site, right? It’s a bit weird mingling In Real Life though, I’ve got to admit! I’m not sure how I feel about people who have actually met me reading this blog… none of my friends or family know where it is or what I write about!
As an end to the night and an end to this post, Eve and I stayed and socialized with ppl until the bitter end, they were practically kicking us out, but it wasn’t even 9pm yet! We scored some killer loot bags and a couple of cab chits on our way out, so I chilled at Eve’s place a bit before heading home. I still haven’t broken out my mad cocktail-making skillz yet, but rest assured they will be well-used in the coming summer months!
If you wanna learn some stuff about Bombay Sapphire Gin or how to make some great gin cocktails, here are some resources for you:
Drink responsibly, dammit!
Drink responsibly, dammit!