Anika and Lebo teamed up to cover the recent Gin & Tonic Fest that took place in Pretoria. Lebo shows you what the festival looked like with incredible imagery and Anika provides great context.

Rollin down the street, smokin indo, sippin on gin and juice
Laid back, with my mind on my money and my money on my mind.

The slight crackle of tonic over ice and citrus notes fill the air… Being an avid gin fan, there was no chance I would miss the opportunity to partake in the Gin & Tonic Fest. It was the stuff of dreams I tell you. Everywhere you looked, locally and internationally crafted gin with every possible twist you can imagine… My love for gin is probably making me sound like I’m an alcoholic but shiiiit, South Africa is really bringing their gin game!

From Musgrave Pink Gin, with it’s fragrant notes of rosehip and rosewater, to Bloedlemoen, as the name suggests, having a delightful blood orange after taste. On this particularly hot Pretoria day, the ice-cold G&Ts really hit the spot.

To top this all off the setup was great! Bands playing and ample chill area to kick it back with friends. This is definitely a must attend for any gin fans.. Nothing like a day in Snorstad with some good drinks and friends. I managed to get Lebo to talk about how he experienced the festival: “Growing up, in the village, in the township and later in the suburbs, I had this mentality that gin was only enjoyed by alternative grown ups and the hardcore alcohol drinkers. Ever heard of Old Buck Gin, that stuff just seems so raw even when you just catch a glimpse of it. In my lifetime, I’ve seen my uncle drink gin neat, my uncle being the hardcore drinker of the family. I guess I might take after him but more in an adventurous and safe way, well who knows..

I know my song choice and love of gin has probably revealed more about my age than I care to.. but youths listen to grandma and hit up the Gin & Tonic Fest when it returns. It’s totes worth it.

gin-and-tonic-fest-5Anyway, as the years passed, I have experimented with a variety of different alcoholic beverages, call me a taste connoisseur of sorts. What I must make mention to is my love for gin. In my experience, it’s one of those drinks you can have when you just relax, when life isn’t in a hurry to go anywhere. With gin, you can claim to have inner peace. The stigma I had of gin still lingers on a bit in the townships, however, it’s with such activations such as Gin & Tonic Fest that break that stigma. At these events, I feel the “closet” gin drinkers come out, as does the appreciation for it. Gin is allowed to spread its wings as the world accepts it as one of those drinks that can be enjoyed by many. The Tshwane leg of the G&T Fest took place on the 5th of November at 012Central in Pretoria CBD, and the gin lovers really came out. Gin, much like vodka can be had with almost any side that tastes great.gin-and-tonic-fest-27It was like being at a major cocktail bar and gin was the main spirit, this was beautiful in all the ways. gin-and-tonic-fest-30I am most definitely looking forward to more of such events. Let the gin lovers and gin brewers prosper. gin-and-tonic-fest-13