Deep fried Mars bars aren’t the only gift this vibrant hub is giving us. As a city in Scotland, the UK’s leading gin production powerhouse, it has the juniper – infused elixir flowing through its veins. A ginaissance is well and truly underway and Glasgow has even taken it so far as to open the world’s first ever botanically inspired gin spa! With so much choice and so little time, here is a round-up of the best places to drink “mother’s ruin” in Scotland’s most populous city.
Situated in the Victorian era De Quincy House, this is Glasgow’s first ever dedicated gin bar. Serving over 71 gins from around the world, you are in for an enjoyable evening nestled in the bar’s grand surroundings. Take advantage of the table service and test their gin inspired dining or gather a group and go gin tasting. Relieve the stress of the day in the stylish gin spa to complete the experience.
Have one for the road and hop on the vintage Routemaster bus for a gin accompanied tour of the city. The Red Bus Bistro offers a 90 minute gin afternoon tea experience that should be added to your itinerary immediately. Swap out tea for Gin Pot-tails and spend the afternoon sipping on a variety of Scottish gins infused with aromatic herbs. Fill up on cake and tiny sandwiches whilst taking in the many sights of the port city. Drinking gin in Glasgow has never been so glamourous!
Set in an interior reminiscent of the American Prohibition Era, this bar in the bottom of the Hilton Hotel has over 90 different types of gin on the menu, all categorised by taste. Opt for BeGin’s Perfect Serve, a ready-made recommended concoction by their expert bar tenders or DIY your favourite cocktail by choosing mixers and garnish. Feeling peckish? Be sure to try the gin-cured Gravlax sharing board.
Doubling as a gin lover’s paradise and a seafood restaurant, you can’t miss this blue building in Glasgow’s hippest area. Featuring artistic cocktails made with over 60 different brands of gin, the small space and nautical motifs in this gastropub make for a snugly romantic below-deck kind of ambiance perfect for date night or a chilled Sunday evening excursion.
Expect chic exclusivity at this Merchant City hotspot. Spanning several floors of the majestic 19th century building, the members club was originally intended to be a meeting hub for business networking but has since been recognised for much more. Have afternoon tea, eat at the Oyster bar, visit the rooftop terrace but most importantly head to Club 29 for that all important gin flight!
Tucked into the West End, The Brass Monkey is one of the smallest bars in the city. However, size hasn’t stopped them from being the party bar and serving over 30 different gin brands. Marking the beginning of the Finnieston strip, this bar is a local favourite and perfect to plonk yourself down in after a long day of exploring or a stressful day at the office.
Centrally located, The Spiritualist is a contemporarily elegant art deco style venue promising knowledgeable staff and memorable cocktails. Easily one of the best gin bars in Glasgow, it presents a three page long gin section on their menu that will leave you spoilt for choice. Enjoy the experience and breathe in the relaxed atmosphere at this Glaswegian hub of sophistication.
The underground arches of the cellar-like restaurant claim to have the best steak in the city but it’s their selection of over 120 gins that caught our attention. Found behind a discreet door underneath the Gordon Street entrance to the Glasgow Central Station, the smart spot goes that one step further and offers a one hour gin masterclass explaining the history and progression of everyone’s favourite tipple.
Home to multi-award winning Makar Gin, the first gin in Glasgow to be distilled locally, the distillery tour is the perfect way to end a gin-infused weekend away. Take a tasting tour and wander through the behind the scenes process that makes your favourite drink come to life. Sip on varied flavours of Makar such as cherry, and appreciate the distillery surroundings.
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Flights to Glasgow
- Lucy Norris