A fresh garnish is that all important finishing touch to any cocktail. Here at our London Distillery, we plant and cultivate a few of our favourite herbs in our urban garden. But when the founders of Soto Gardens (local gin drinkers often seen in our shop!) got in touch with the generous gift of their Gin Herb Garden, we jumped at the chance to also learn more about growing garnishes and other herbs.
Here is our interview with Jamie Felstead – founder of Soto Gardens:
How do you like to garnish your Hayman’s & Tonic?
We’re big fans of Rosemary when making our favourite Hayman’s London Dry and tonic. It brings a beautiful savoury note to the drink and its strong flavour really compliments the juniper, reminding us of wonderful holidays in Spain.
How important is your garnish when enjoying gin?
It’s actually really important and can seriously elevate the drink. With every gin having its own flavour profile, the garnish can enhance or complement the flavours. We love experimenting with herbs, fruits, and spices to see which combinations we prefer.
What do we need to know about growing herbs?
The most important thing about growing any plant is to consider the amount of light it gets. Most herbs thrive in sunny spots, so we recommend placing your herb garden in the place where there is the most sun.
Also do be aware that herbs planted in containers and pots dry out much quicker than plants in the ground, so you will need to water them a little more frequently during the hotter months.
What do most people do wrong (when growing herbs)?
Your herbs need constant trimming to help them keep their shape and to encourages new growth. That’s mostly where people go wrong – not using them enough!
When should you prune?
Prune herbs as and when they need it. If the herb gets too big, it can become leggy and lose flavour.
Are they easy to over-water?
Herbs such as rosemary and lemon thyme are used to warmer climates so try not to overwater, we suggest only watering when the soil is dry to the touch and – at this point – water the soil until it’s drenched.