Food & drink

World Gin Day Saturday June 9

WORLD Gin Day is fast approaching and if you intend marking the occasion what better way than with a Northern Ireland gin?

We're spoiled for choice when it comes to local gins - there's Jawbox, Shortcross, Boatyard, Copeland, and Belfast 1912, all needing nothing more than a decent tonic water and a handful of ice cubes.

Here's the lowdon on each of the local gins.


Distilled at Echlinville Distillery in Kircubbin, Co Down, Jawbox is the work of Gerry White who used to be the manager of the John Hewitt in Belfast. Jawbox gets its name from the beautiful Belfast sink which is also known as a jawbox since the kitchen is the heart of most homes and where all the chat happens. You can visit the distillery on July 7 as part of a Gardens and Gin Tour. You'll enjoy a guided walk through the National Trust's Mount Stewart Estate and a trip to the Echlinville Distillery to experience the art of gin making.

Jawbox Gin & Ginger
35ml Jawbox
Premium Ginger Ale
Plenty of ice
Pour the Jawbox into an ice filled glass
Top up with Ginger Ale
Squeeze and drop in a slice of lime 



This distinctive gin is distilled at Rademon Estate near Crossgar by husband and wife team Fiona and David Boyd-Armstrong. Fiona grew up on the stunning Rademon estate which provides four key ingredients for its famous gin - clover, elderflowers, elderberries and applies. The Shortcross team recently opened a visitor centre and you can take a tour of the distillery and enjoy a cool G&T. On World Gin Day your tour will end with a masterclass followed by live music on the terrace overlooking the estate.

PS Shortcross sealed and laid down the first caks of its three-year whiskey in 2015...

Basil Delight
50ml Shortcross Gin
25ml Lemon Juice
20ml Sugar Syrup
15 Muddled Basil Leaves
Add Shortcross, sugar syrup and basil to a shaker
Muddle the basil
Add lemon juice and ice and shake vigorously
Strain into chilled rocks glass filled with ice
Serve with a fresh basil sprig



Set on the shores of Lough Erne in Co Fermanagh, the Boatyard Distilery was set up in 2016 and currently produces a double gin, an Old Tom gin and vodka. One of the botanicals used in Boatyard is sweet gale which is harvested from the bogs of Fermanagh. There are regular tours of the distillery at Tully Bay Marina and as well as sampling the produce you'll be given a bottle to take home.

The Wings of Spring
50ml Boatyard Old Tom Gin
50ml fresh green apple juice 
25ml gorse syrup 
15ml lemon juice 
2ml white wine vinegar
Shake with ice until chilled, strain over ice in a tall glass and top with 60ml of soda water
Add 15ml RubyBlue Spirits blackcurrant liqueur (optional).




If you're fond of a rhuberry gin chances are you've been drinking Copeland all this time. The fruit botanicals used in this gin are sourced from Co Down and the gin is handcrafted in small batches in Saintfield. Gareth Irvine is the man behind Copeland Gin and he crowd funded to raise the capital to start his business in summer 2016.

The Copeland Bramble
25ml Copeland Raspberry & Mint Gin
15ml Sugar Syrup
15ml Lemon Juice
10ml Creme De Mure
Handful of crushed ice
Fill a chilled glass with crushed ice
Build gin, lemon juice & sugar syrup
Stir, then pour creme de mure over the top
Garnish with raspberries & blackberries 

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