Cheers! Return of festival celebrating best of the county’s gin and fizz

What a corker ... visitors enjoying themselves at the inaugural festival last year
What a corker ... visitors enjoying themselves at the inaugural festival last year

The Sussex Gin and Fizz Festival, which launched last year, returns to Lewes on Saturday, June 16.

Celebrating the best of local sparkling wine and gin and organised by Lewes District Council, the festival will once again be held in the walled Southover Grange Gardens from 11am until 6pm.

Serving up their own fizz will be seven local producers ranging from Rodmell-based Breaky Bottom, one of the oldest vineyards in the UK, to Divergent, from Worthing, which has a brand new product made in the same method as prosecco. New to the event is the Bolney Wine Estate while Wiston Estate, Carr Taylor, Plumpton College and Charles Palmer Vineyards are all making a welcome return.

The event’s nine gin producers include Chichester-based The Nodding Donkey Distillery and Generation Distillers from Chailey, who will be unveiling brand new gins, and Seven Sisters Gin, made from the remains of grapes pressed for wine, by Rathfinny Estate in Alfriston.

Tom Cat Gin from Crowborough will be revealing its new Blueberry Gin, and well-known local names Slake Spirits from Shoreham, Cabin Pressure from Horsham, Harley House from Seaford, Chilgrove Spirits from Chilgrove, near Chichester, and Brighton Gin will also be at the event.

Other exciting exhibitors include: Folkingtons (locally made tonics and juices); Fierce Botanics (a new tonic made in Lewes); Noble and Stace Chocolatiers (chocolates flavoured with Sussex gin and fizz); and Miall’s (alcoholic sorbet).

You won’t go hungry during the day either, with locally-produced food on sale.

It’s not just about eating and drinking, however, as the festival features a programmed music stage with three live sets from duo Lucas and King; trio Mudlow and King Size Slim playing an eclectic mix of acoustic roots boogie, classic and alternative country and rock ‘n’ roll interspersed by a selection of tunes from DJ Stephanie Goodman.

There are still a limited number of tickets available to buy online and in person from Lewes and Seaford Tourist Information Centres and Symposium Wine Emporium in Lewes, but you are advised to buy soon to avoid disappointment.