A new gin? Yes, and it’s exclusive to Donegal!
Castle Grove last week held their Summer Strawberry Festival, but what no one was expecting was the unveiling of their very own gin, made with their own strawberries. The event became a really sweet summer party then!
Guests were eager to get a taste of the tipple, mixed and garnished to perfection with fresh mint and strawberries from the gardens, and the verdict was gintastic.
Gin has soared in popularity in recent years and fast become a favourite drink, and a drinking experience, for many. Castle Grove have thankfully tapped into the revolution to deliver this pink drink that is uniquely fresh and fruity and uniquely Donegal.
If you haven’t been to Castle Grove Country House Hotel before, then now is the time to escape Letterkenny and chill out in the beautiful grounds with a Strawberry Gin – because you can only get this drink at the hotel. This suits us fine when it is so delicately decorated and matched with a sparkling Fever Tree tonic.
Irene Sweeney, Assistant Manager at Castle Grove, said her family were inspired to create their own house drink to make the best use of the produce from their 4 acre historic Walled Gardens.
“We started out with the concept of creating an artisanal quality alcohol product featuring our Walled Garden strawberries for our festival,” she said.
“With the growth of artisanal Irish gins trending at the moment, and gin being a favourite drink of Mary T’s and the girls, we decided strawberry gin and worked with Listoke Distillery to produce it.
“We aimed to create a product unique to Castle Grove Walled Garden and the fresh organic produce grown there – Castle Grove Strawberry Gin.”
Irene says their carefully crafted drink idea came to fruition just in time for the Strawberry Festival on July 1st.
“We joined the Donegal Food Coast Initiative in Spring, and this is when we decided to have our first Strawberry Festival so that we could introduce everyone to the Walled Garden and all its produce. We decided to focus on the strawberries as the feature, due to the vast quantities of strawberries produced each summer.
“We use the strawberries create a selection of products, sweet and savoury for our guests and this year decided to develop the Strawberry Gin in addition.
“We were delighted to launch Castle Grove Strawberry Gin at our first Summer Strawberry Festival and were very excited by people’s initial response when tasting it. We would like to thank everyone for their positive feedback on the gin and the Strawberry Festival, and look forward to future events at Castle Grove,” Irene said.
Strawberry Gin is expected to be number one order for many at the hotel this weekend and the months to come as gin lovers look for a new adventure. The gin is only available on the Castle Grove bar menu and can be used in a variety of cocktails or simply served with tonic and lime wedge.
“We currently have a limited stock for the summer but are working on offer it throughout the year due to the hugely popular response,” Irene said.
With Wimbledon and strawberry season in full swing, this is the perfect time to get the girls together for an evening out – any excuse for a gin night!