Yesterday evening I did something a little bit different.
I went on a tour of a gin distillery. The first new distillery in London for 200 years in fact, and it was marvellous.
Tucked away in the residential streets of west London, I walked past the building twice before finally asking Google Maps to tell me where this rather fabulous operation was taking place.
And this rather fabulous operation is called Sipsmith.
We were greeted by French Boy of Lea & Sandeman, which is a brilliant wine company that has several shops in west London, and Sipsmith Sam, one of a duo who set up the company.
This distillery, while small, is beautiful. The machine, called Prudence, recently celebrated her third birthday and her shiny copper exterior shows she's ageing well.
Surrounded by black barrels of ethanol we sipped on freshly made gin and tonics and listened to the fascinating story of Sipsmith and indeed of gin, while soaking up the former with delights from the Ginger Pig butcher and the latter with great interest.
We squished juniper berries between our fingers to release the scent, slurped neat vodka and gin, both of which were very palatable without even a hint of tonic, and heard about some new products in the pipeline.
The description of the distilling process was a simple science lesson – I understood it perfectly and as a result, I doubt I will drink any other gin or vodka again.
Rather fortuitously too, I was placed perfectly to lipread Sipsmith Sam, and even better, he was incredibly well spoken, so I was able to understand nearly everything, even through the gin fug that soon descended.
Wisely, after the tour, we hit the pub, where I preceded to dilute my gin and vodka intake with a pint of Otter Ale.
This means that today, I'm feeling a little fragile, so let's keep everything quiet please…
…which considering we're talking about my world, should actually be quite easy.