Gin is one of our favourite spirits here at GB Hospitality. We love it in cocktail form or topped with cold lemonade and plenty of ice. Although we tend to drink it quite a lot(!), we never really know exactly where and when it had originated from and how it’s been drank throughout the years, que this blog post!! T urns out it has quite an interesting history, one that we had to share with you.
It was created in Holland
Although Gin is one of the UK’s most popular drinks, it actually originated from Holland way back in the 17th Century - despite some arguing it came from Italy centuries before. What’s most surprising is that it started out as a medicine being sold across pharmacies to help with stomach pains. It was often mixed with Jenever to make it a little more bearable and Dutch soldiers would drink it before heading into battle, hence where the phrase ‘Dutch Courage’ comes from. The English soldiers saw this and began drinking it too! Soon enough it was brought back to the UK, distilled and enjoyed by many - especially the poor because it was so cheap. And it took 150 years to make it into the drink we all know and love today.
When Gin first arrived in the U.K. in the 17th Century...
There were 10 million gallons of it being made a year, and it quickly became one of the most popular choices of drinks- as other alcohol including wine and beer were just too expensive for ordinary people to afford. However, when the government realised just how much was being consumed, they decided to put a tax on it as birth rates were going up much more quickly than death rates!! This sent everyone into panic with many people seeking it from the 'Black Market' for a very reduced rate. In 1736, The Gin Act was put in place to make sure anyone selling would take out a licence for £50 (although this didn’t work)! However things did calm down when the beer bill was lifted, meaning everyone could enjoy a drink. Phew!
Although it was a much more popular drink in the good old days, it's still a very common choice today.
If you’re looking for the perfect gin cocktail recipe, discover our guide here!
A couple of years ago, afternoon tea came back into fashion with hotels and restaurants across the UK rushing to lay on platters of freshly made and sandwiches that were accompanied with a glass of fizz or pot of tea for guests. However, fast forward to today and the 'traditional' concept of it has changed massively...and we love it!
Chefs have been let loose with their artistic skills and started creating unique menus that replace cakes and scones with items such as chicken wings, mini burgers and nachos. We've picked some of the most unique afternoon teas around; check them out below!
Punk Afternoon Tea
If American-style food is for you, then you’ll love the Punk Afternoon tea at the Baltic Social in Liverpool. For £25 a head, you’ll be served a range of delicious food including mini burgers, spicy fries, hot dogs, pretzels finished with a chilled alcoholic beverage. It’s one the cities incredibly popular teas, so make sure if you’re planning a visit to book a table.
Address: 27 Parliament St, Liverpool L8 5RN
Phone: 0151 707 1137
Step back in time to the wonderful 1920s in the wonderful speakeasy, Quaglino’s. Indulge in classic foods including smoked salmon rosti, strawberry tarts, finished with a cocktail (or two)! Occasionally they have other themed teas on to, such as last year’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Tea.
Address:16 Bury Street, London SW1Y 6AJ
Phone: 020 7930 6767
Mad Hatter Afternoon Tea
In 2016, The Sanderson scooped the award for the best afternoon themed tea, and it’s not hard to see why! For those Alice in Wonderland fans, or those who just fancy one of THE most amazing treats around, then book in for the Mad Hatter Afternoon Tea. Everything is themed, from the cutlery to the cakes which include the coffee flavoured pocket-watch macaroon!
Address: 50 Berners St, London W1T 3NG
Phone: 020 7300 1400
The Freaky Afternoon Tea
Roll up, roll up and and come and feast your eyes on The Freaky Afternoon Tea at Circo - The Next Generation. One of Liverpool's most iconic venues has recently moved from its old home on the Albert Dock up to Seel Street and will be opening its doors this March.
Address: Seel Street, Liverpool
Phone: 0151 709 0470
Share with us your favourite Afternoon Tea! GB Hospitality x
The hospitality industry is constantly changing and adapting new ways of working to ensure that guests have the best possible experience. Over the years, hospitality trends have come and go, and some have been a permanent fixture. Last year saw the increase of rented apartments from companies such as Airbnb following the high demand for a more localized travel trip. This year, the hotel industry is set to make some huge changes and we’ve explored some of the trends that we might encounter this year.
The importance of storytelling
To make a hotel stand out from competitors, many marketers are taking to storytelling to bring their venue to life. By using a range of marketing materials including video content, imagery and interactive tours, they are connecting with their audience on a more meaningful level. By injecting personality into their hotel allows guests to understand who they are and their offerings rather than having the same tone as every other leading establishment. It’s vital that it’s incorporated across the whole hotel, from menus to meetings rooms to give off the same message.
Staying overnight in a luxury hotel is no longer about a night away in a queen-sized bed and a fancy bathroom. Today’s visitors are looking for a exclusive experience that they’ll never forget. This has led to a rise in unique boutique hotels, such as Liverpool’s Hard Days Night Hotel who provide Beatles themed suites and Manchester’s Gotham Hotel. Although hotel design has always had a vital part, today it plays one of the biggest roles in the industry. The design of a hotel also offers guests the chance to establish if this is the right type of hotel for them to stay in!
Increased loyalty programmes
Although we are aware that loyalty programmes have been in place for many years, hotels should be focusing on their customers and retaining their business. Competition has increased, especially following the rise of cheap accommodation from Airbnb and deals from hotel booking agents.
Already a leading influencer in many guest decisions, social media is set to expand during 2017. It's a great chance for hotels to share with their audience events, offers and other visitors experiences at the hotel. Through social, guests can connect on a more personal level whether that's through following the latest Instagram story, or tagging themselves in on Facebook.
The rise of mobile check-ins
Mobile is leading the way when it comes to making travel plans, whether that’s booking flights, trains or hotel visits through them. Leading airlines across the world have already started allowing passengers to check in by using their mobile, replacing the need to check in and print off boarding cards. Hotels have also followed suit, making it much easier for guests to arrive and check in without any hassle, and check-out in the same way too. High-street hoteliers such as the Marriott have already introduced this scheme but we think 2017 that will be the year when it will plummet vastly.
Although these are our predictions for 2017, we are very excited to see what others trends might be introduced to us working in the hospitality industry this year!
What do you think will be one of the biggest trends of 2017? Let us know! GB Hospitality x
As you may know already, here at team GB Hospitality we are very fond of Gin. And with it still being Ginuary, we thought we’d share with you are top pick of Gin parlours from across the UK. Whether you’re looking for a traditional, old-fashioned bar or the hottest place to hit the city, we are sure you'll find something you like.
Fogg’s Gin Parlour, London
In the heart of Covent Garden, you’ll find one of London’s most unique Gin bars around, Fogg’s Gin Parlour. For those who are keen to step back in time, then this is a must! Guests are greeted by its ‘front of house’ suitably theme in a tweed waistcoat and moustache who leads them through into the themed bar, which offers up to 300 different types of Gin. They have an endless cocktail menu, with the bar staff on hand to offer advice on trying something new. Throughout the week, they offer a range of offers from G&T Saturdays, Gin Safari and Cream Cakes and Cocktails. As you can imagine, this place gets full quickly so we’d recommend making a reservation!
Find it here: 1 New Row, Covent Garden, WC2N 4EA
Atlas Bar, Manchester
For those looking for a more modern edge parlour, then head to Manchester’s Atlas Bar. Here, you can sample 300 different types of Gin while taking in some of the stunning views from the city. As part of their new year’s resolution, they’ve promised to introduce a new gin each week to their menu (we can hear Gin lovers rejoicing around the world)! As it’s so popular, they’ve now set up a store, The Gin Bible, where you can find out more about your drinks, the latest recipes and buy your favourite drink online. Amazing!
Find it here: 376 Deansgate, Manchester, M3 4LY
The Jekyll And Hyde Gin Parlour, Birmingham
Step back into the Victorian Era in Birmingham's finest Gin Parlour. Visitors wanting to relax in the parlour must take the staircase where they’ll be escorted back in time. Here you’ll find a selection of 90 gins from across the world. It’s split into two parts (obviously) with one being Mr Hyde’s Main Bar and Dr. Jeryll's Gin Parlour. They offer freshly made food here - all with a cool vintage menu.
Find it here: 28 Steelhouse Ln, City Centre, Birmingham, B4 6BJ
What’s your favourite gin parlour? Tweet us over at GB Hospitality and let us know! x
Ginuary is here (hurrah)! It's the perfect chance for tipple lovers to sample some of the best Gin drinks around. And seeing as the team at GB Hospitality happen to be HUGE Gin fans, we thought we'd share our top favourite gin cocktails recipes so you can make them from the comfort of your own home. Happy Ginning...
Aperol Gin Spritz
The ultimate classic cocktail has to be the Aperol Gin Spritz that’s perfect for a mid-week treat or for cooling you down on a hot summers night!
Juice from 1 lime
4 mint leaves
1tsp of sugar
How to make:
In the bottom of the cocktail glass, mix the mint leaves, lime juice and sugar together. Then add ice to the glass, followed by the gin and aperol. Add a touch of prosecco, stir and relax!
Originating from Singapore, the Singapore Sling continues to be one of the best cocktails ever created! Although it was originally designed to be a woman’s drink because of it pink colouring, it’s since gone onto be a drink loved by all.
25ml Dry Gin
25ml Cherry Brandy
25ml Lemon Juice
How to make:
Pour all ingredients into a cocktail shaker and continue to shake until it feels chilled. Then pour into an ice-filled glass and enjoy!
Although this cocktail can be made with vodka or gin today, traditionally it's always been a gin based cocktail - and delicious enough to make our list! It's definitely a cocktail for those who like sweet and tangy tastes!
50ml grapefruit juice
How to make:
Using a highball glass, press a damp rim onto a plate of salt. Simply add ice, vodka and grapefruit juice and stir for the perfect drink.
What is your favourite Gin Cocktail? Make sure to tweet us over at @gbhospitality x
With Christmas out the way, it's now time to begin preparations for one of the biggest nights of the year...New Year's Eve! It's a great chance for families and friends to get together to celebrate bringing in 2017! No matter if you're looking for a big night out, or a cosy night away, here are the top places that you should consider spending your new year's eve...
Castle St Townhouse
Wine and dine in style at Liverpool's leading restaurant and bar, Castle St Townhouse. For a night you won't forget, indulge into their special New Year's Eve Dinner. For £55, guests will be treated to a three-course meal, with starters including Roast Tomato, Seared Scallops or Maple Glazed Crispy Duck and mains consisting of Fillet Medallions, Asparagus or Pan-fried Sea bass Fillets. Finish with a selection of deserts from chocolate brownie to strawberry cheesecake. Simply relax, sip on a range of festive and traditional cocktails and let the countdown to 12 begin! Spaces are booking up fast, so call the team on 0151 363 7509 to book your place.
The Mere Resort and Spa
For those looking for the ultimate relaxation, or romantic night away, head out to the Cheshire countryside to The Mere Resort and Spa. In the daytime, why not visit the spa to pamper yourself or have a few rounds on the stunning golf course? Come the evening, celebrate the New Year at the Mere's Gala Dinner. Book a room now for two from only £330, and stay for a full English breakfast on New Year's Day...
Wishing all my clients and friends a great New Year! GB Hospitality #gbloves x
As another Christmas approaches us, I’d like to take the opportunity to wish all my clients and friends a very Merry Christmas and a prosperous new year. During 2016, I have worked closely with a range of the North West's finest hospitality clients including the luxury Mere Golf Resort & Spa, the very creative DV8 Designs, the famous Hard Days Night Hotel and Liverpool's leading bar, Circo. During each project I've had the opportunity to work alongside each of them as they have gone from strength to strength. I am very excited to see what 2017 holds for both GB Hospitality, and my lovely clients!
I'd also like to thank all of those who work across the hospitality sector, who continue to provide excellent service to their guests visiting their establishments to ensure that they have the best festive experience. You are all amazing!
Merry Christmas everyone.
GB Hospitality X