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Gin-credible time as hundreds enjoy Ipswich festival

PUBLISHED: 17:02 23 March 2019 | UPDATED: 17:45 23 March 2019

Hayley Wade and Gill Fry both from Ipswich enjoying one of the 101 different types of gin on offer at The Great British Gin Festival at the Corn Exchange. Picture: Neil Didsbury

Hayley Wade and Gill Fry both from Ipswich enjoying one of the 101 different types of gin on offer at The Great British Gin Festival at the Corn Exchange. Picture: Neil Didsbury

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Rhubarb and custard, lemon and pepper and cucumber and aloe vera were just some of the flavours on offer to tantalise the taste buds at the Great British Gin Festival in Ipswich today.

Gins were organised in alphabetical order at The Great British Gin Festival at Ipswich Corn Exchange. Picture: Neil DidsburyGins were organised in alphabetical order at The Great British Gin Festival at Ipswich Corn Exchange. Picture: Neil Didsbury

On its debut trip to Ipswich, the UK’s largest touring gin festival, has been a huge success - seeing more than 400 people attend the day session and nearly 600 signed up for the evening session at the Corn Exchange.

Juliette Dean, the events production manager, said: “Gin has become a fashion - we are seeing more and more people getting excited over gin and it’s range of unusual and classic flavours.”

The festival features more than 100 different gins, tantalising peoples tastebuds with flavour combinations such as Palma Violet, rhubarb and ginger and even lemon and pepper.

This year the festival is touring more than 30 cities, with live music, cocktail demonstrations and hundreds of different gins to taste and purchase.

The gin bible with all of the 101 different types of gin on offer was handed to guests as they arrived at Ipswich Corn Exchange. Picture: Neil DidsburyThe gin bible with all of the 101 different types of gin on offer was handed to guests as they arrived at Ipswich Corn Exchange. Picture: Neil Didsbury

Juliette added: “There is something for everyone here - if you don’t like gin when you arrive I’m sure I can find you one flavour that you will love.

“Among the people who attend are young women in their 20s who are following the trend and there are also older generations who are into more classic flavours.”

“At the festival we’ve got a range of different flavour combinations which aren’t out there in the shops paired alongside the more classic gins for people who know what they love.”

Tanya Baker, from Bury St Edmunds, was visiting with friends and said: “I’ve never seen so many unusual flavoured gins before, it was crazy.

The Great British Gin Festival which tours the UK,  landed at Ipswich Corn Exchange on Saturday. Picture: Neil DidsburyThe Great British Gin Festival which tours the UK, landed at Ipswich Corn Exchange on Saturday. Picture: Neil Didsbury

“My personal new favourites which I will be buying are the cucumber and aloe vera, or the lemongrass and ginger.”

The event, which is being held today, Saturday March 23 at Ipswich Corn Exchange, has an afternoon session from 1pm-5pm and an evening session from 6pm-10pm.

Upon arrival guests receive a gin bible and a gin glass to take round the festival and there is a wide range of merchandise to choose from.

Speaking of the event’s success, Juliette continued: “Ipswich is a great location to host the festival at - the people are really friendly here and the venue is lovely - we will be sure to come back.”

Around one thousand people attended The Great British Gin Festival at Ipswich Corn Exchange. Picture: Neil DidsburyAround one thousand people attended The Great British Gin Festival at Ipswich Corn Exchange. Picture: Neil Didsbury

“There is definitely a big gin culture in Ipswich for sure. Last night a few of the team went to the Three Wise Monkeys in town and tried out gins from their own gin bar - it’s really cool that more independent places are joining in and spreading their knowledge of the drink.”

A live swing band also brought a festival vibe to the Corn Exchange - singing hits from Amy Winehouse to Frank Sinatra.

Any guests still wishing to attend can purchase tickets on the door for £20.

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