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Shed Inspiration: The Gin Palace

Open your own private gin bar…in the garden!

Our Staffordshire showsite team has created this small but perfectly formed gin-themed retreat.

With no dress code and an always-open policy, where better to enjoy a G & T than your own garden bar.

This Gin Palace has everything the discerning gin drinker needs – a bar, wide selection of gins and space for a friend or three.

One of our garden building experts, Jayne Lewis says inspiration for the Palace was taken from the specialised gin bars continuously popping up in high streets all over the country.

We wanted to demonstrate that something sophisticated and creative could be made out of the typical idea of a ‘bar’ at the end of the garden. The Gin Palace is exactly the kind of place you want to go out to on a Saturday night– in your slippers!

The colour palette has been kept muted, for plants, artwork and coloured bottles to do the talking. We love the idea of having a fresh mint plant on the bar – for those moments when your glass needs a sprig of something to stimulate the senses. Speaking of which, having a bowl of fresh fruit to hand will never go amiss when there are gin goblets in need of garnishing.

The tall table and matching stools are reminiscent of the ‘upcycling’ movement and give the feeling of being situated in a contemporary bar, as does the industrial-style lamp on the glass-topped bar.

Bar Styling Tips:

  • Shelving adds height to the space, and allows you to show off your favourite bottles and glassware
  • Fresh fruit, flowers and foliage give will give the space interest and a ready supply of botanicals.
  • If you’re green fingered install a living wall of easy-to-pick garnishes.
  • Add mirrors to create the illusion of space and get the look of a swanky city-centre bar without the jostling for the attention of the bar tender.
  • Get yourself a quality mixology kit. We can’t stop ogling this copper set from VonShef.
  • An ice bucket is, of course, vital. We’d recommend shopping around for the perfect style that matches your Palace’s vibe – whether that’s contemporary or vintage. To match the copper cocktail set, we’ll be ordering the bucket to match.
  • Make sure you have plenty of glassware so you can concentrate on cocktail making rather than pot collecting.
  • Tidy all your bottles to face the same way, the same goes with glasses that have handles. These little details lift ordinary spaces into jealousy-inducing rooms.
  • Head over to our Pinterest board for loads more great styling ideas to convert your garden building into a swoon-worthy cocktail-sipping haven.

Botanical Cocktail of the Week: Honeysuckle 75

FOR THE HONEYSUCKLE SYRUP:

240 G (8 1/2 OZ) SUGAR

250 ML (8 1/2 FL OZ / 1 CUP) WATER

1 CUP HONEYSUCKLE FLOWERS, STEMS REMOVED, GENTLY SHAKEN TO REMOVE ANY DIRT OR INSECTS

FOR THE COCKTAIL:

45 ML (1 1/2 FL OZ) GIN

20 ML (3/4 FL OZ) LEMON JUICE, PLUS A LONG, THIN STRIP OF LEMON ZEST

15 ML (1/2 FL OZ) HONEY SUCKLE SYRUP

60 ML (2 FL OZ) SPARKLING WHITE WINE

TO MAKE THE HONEYSUCKLE SYRUP:

Combine the sugar and water in a saucepan and place over a medium heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Once the mixture is boiling, turn off the heat and add the honeysuckle flowers. Allow the syrup to cool, then strain off the flowers. The syrup can be stored in a jar or bottle in the refrigerator for up to 1 month

MAKES 400 ML (13 1/2 FL OZ / 1 2/3 CUPS)

TO MAKE THE COCKTAIL:

Shake the gin, lemon juice and honeysuckle syrup with ice. Strain (removing the ice) into a flute and top with the sparkling wine. Squeeze the strip of lemon zest to release its oils and add it to the glass.

Recipe reproduced from The Cocktail Garden ~ Botanical Cocktails For Every Season by Ed Loveday and beautifully illustrated by Adriana Picker.