Gin & Fizz Festival comes to East Sussex

Southover Grange gardens, Lewes ENGSUS00120130717181900
Southover Grange gardens, Lewes ENGSUS00120130717181900

The first ever Sussex Gin & Fizz Festival, celebrating the best of local sparkling wine and gin, comes to Lewes at the end of this month.

Eight gin producers and more than ten vineyards will be taking part in the one-day festival from 11am to 6pm on Saturday September 30 in the scenic, walled Southover Grange Gardens in the heart of Lewes, just a five-minute walk from the railway station.

Tickets are just £10* and can be bought online from www.sussexginandfizzfestival.com or in person from Lewes or Seaford Tourist Information Centres, or Symposium or Union Music Store, in Lewes.

Visitors can travel free on a special Gin & Fizz Routemaster bus from Brighton to Lewes leaving from the Old Steine in Brighton at 10.30am and 12.30pm only. Tickets must be bought in advance and allocation is on a first come, first served basis.

Although Sussex is already well known for its award-winning sparkling wine, it is also fast gaining a reputation for its gin production too. Exhibitors at the festival will include Mayfield’s, Tom Cat, Chilgrove, Brighton Gin and Harley House plus a brand-new gin from the Rathfinny Estate in Alfriston.

There’ll be a choice of first class mixers and soft drinks on offer from Folkingtons and other suppliers.

Adding the fizz to the event will be top names including Ridgeview, Bolney, Plumpton Estate, Court Garden, Breaky Bottom and Bluebell Vineyard.

As well as tasting fantastic wine and gin from a range of producers, visitors can enjoy live music, delicious food and free talks from industry experts.

People are welcome to take their own picnic and there will be a huge choice of artisan foods, including home-made cakes and locally made ice-cream, available from Sussex-based vintage vans and airstream trailers.

An impressive line-up of live music will provide entertainment throughout the day, including the laid-back sounds of Morlove & Moonbeam, Black Cat & the Boy, Mike Ross, Trevor Moss and Hannah Lou, LosFeliz and main headline Ellie Ford, all put together by independent label and Lewes-based Union Music Store.

When the festival is finished, visitors can head to the new Depot Cinema in Lewes that is offering a special Gin & Fizz dinner menu plus a screening of Gosford Park. Visit www.lewesdepot.org for cinema tickets and prices,

*Accompanied children under 14 years are free and accompanied young people between 15 and 17 years are £3. Although picnics are welcomed, no alcohol is allowed into the event.

• Brighton visitors can travel free on a special Gin & Fizz Routemaster bus from Brighton to Lewes leaving from the Old Steine in Brighton at 10.30am and 12.30pm only. Tickets must be bought in advance and allocation is on a first come, first served basis. For more information visit www.sussexginandfizzfestival.com