|In mid-December, 2016, Portobello Road Gin launched its much-anticipated venture, The Distillery, a unique, four-floor concept appealing to budding connoisseurs, discerning drinkers, and gin lovers alike. Located in London’s Notting Hill district, The Distillery is home to Portobello Road Gin’s distillery, two bars, a museum, off-licensed shop and gin-making experience The Ginstitute, along with three boutique guest rooms overlooking the bustling, iconic market street, Portobello Road.
The Distillery in London's Notting Hill.
Created by Portobello Road Gin founder Ged Feltham alongside directors Jake Burger, Tom Coates, Del Jones, and Paul Lane, The Distillery is the first of its kind in the U.K., providing visitors with an entirely immersive experience, surrounding them in the rich history of gin and its cultural significance, and enabling them to see how the spirit continues to evolve over time. Moreover, with its on-site 400L copper alembic still, the brand will be able to further expand its growth, both capitalizing upon and meeting the demand in new export markets in Italy and the United States.
Ground floor bar The Resting Room.
The Distillery is the most recent addition to their portfolio of successful U.K. ventures in the food and beverage industry as part of the gin’s sister company, Leelex. These include projects such as Mexican social eating experience Cielo Blanco (located in both London and Leeds), renowned cocktail bar, Jakes Bar & Still Room, and Pintura Basque Kitchen & Bar, which was a finalist in both the SBID International Design Awards and the Observer Food Monthly Awards.
The ground floor is home to The Resting Room, a timeless bar dedicated to serving an eclectic range of spirits that are created by Master Distiller Jake Burger and an elite team of instructors in the two 30L copper stills on-site. Unique approaches to the craft of distilling are found here, with one-of-a-kind gin blends alongside other experimental spirits such as avocado and olive oil vodka, showcasing the innovative spirit behind these novel iterations of classic drinks and cocktails.
Guests are also able to enjoy a specially curated selection of international spirits that have been aged in hand-built barrels suspended above the bar from which they are directly served. Each spirit experiences an ongoing aging process within the barrel, lending to the remarkable nature of the cocktails served at The Resting Room, as no two drinks are exactly the same in their flavor. To perfectly pair with the drinks selection, the bar’s quintessentially British menu allows guests to enjoy some of the nation’s most notable dishes and flavors all crafted with local ingredients, featuring a selection of small plates and a "charred & roast" section all cooked in the bar’s Josper oven.
GinTonica celebrates the Gin & Tonic.
Above on the first floor is GinTonica, a Spanish-inspired bar and kitchen dedicated to the country’s passion for local design, food, and the Gin & Tonic. With its interior décor inspired by a Spanish studio, guests are transported to the Mediterranean as they enjoy a tapas food menu created by Executive Head Chef, Greg Lewis of the renowned Pintura Kitchen & Bar. GinTonica serves their G&Ts in a traditional Copa de Balón (a balloon goblet glass), and guests are also able to choose from a selection of some of the world’s finest gins for their cocktail. Here, The Distillery’s GinTonic Plus menu pays homage to Spain’s love affair with juniper, taking the traditional spirit and mixer serve to the next level with the addition of innovative garnishes, tinctures, and bitters that await the most discerning palates.
Cocktails include the Portobello Road Gin 171 (top)
and the Felix Martini using Portobello Road Gin Directors Cut (above).
The top floor hosts The Boardroom, a private dining room complete with its own private bar. In addition, guests are also able to awaken in The Distillery’s highly exclusive accommodations, limited to three bespoke guest rooms. Individually designed by each of the brand’s founding directors, each room encapsulates the eclectic culture of the local area with amenities such as a special minibar filled spirits crafted on-site, as well as a bespoke hand-made record player with a vinyl playlist specially curated by Rough Trade Records.
The Distillery is also the new home of The Ginstitute, the famed London gin-making experience that allows visitors to make their own personal blend of gin. Guestsare treated to a historic journey by entertaining and knowledgable "ginstructors," revisiting crucial events in the history of the spirit such as the miserable gin craze of London in the 1700s and up to 300 years of heritage up to its recent "ginaissance."
Lastly, a museum of artifacts including the first-ever English cocktail book is another addition to The Distillery, as well as its on-site liquor store are filled with gin-related memorabilia along with spirits available for purchase.
Founder of Portobello Road Gin and The Distillery Ged Feldman said, “The Distillery is definitely our most ambitious and crucial project to date by far. The acquisition of a rare four-floor site on one of London’s busiest streets was extremely important to us as a small but fast-expanding company. We originally started out in bars and restaurants and so to be able to combine the expertise that we have in that area was a natural progression for us as a company. Not only does The Distillery mean we can continue to produce our product on Portobello Road, it will allow us to grow our hugely successful gin-making experience, The Ginstitute, which has outgrown its original venue. The most interesting parts of the project are the new and unexpected opportunities that have come with a development of this size and scale. We are proud purveyors of London spirit and we look forward to exciting existing fans and new customers alike with amazing gin and other wonderful new distillates and aged spirits.”
For more information, visit www.the-distillery.london
Portobello Road Gin
Born at 171 Portobello Road—and after nine months of experimentation—the perfect blend of nine botanicals was crafted using juniper berries, coriander seed, angelica root, orris root, lemon peel, orange peel, licorice root, cassia bark, and nutmeg.
Portobello Road Gin is imported to the U.S. through Park Street Imports.