The humble G&T has been raised to new heights in recent years, so why not dedicate a day to it on this leisurely gin-crawl?
One good G&T crawl deserves another, so we’ve created another gin-tastic jaunt around Leeds. Do it on its own or combine it with our first list to create an almighty tour of the best gin bars in Leeds – the choice is yours. But whatever you choose, you’re in for a wild ride filled with classic, rare and flavoured tipples.
Vice & Virtue
Start your G&T crawl at the top end of town at Vice and Virtue. There’s a massive array of gins from across the globe to choose from, with Aviation, Smoked Fifty Pounds and even Cold River. But why not start with their pièce de résistance, Death’s Door? Grab this deceptively smooth Wisconsin spirit in their perfect serve, which combines juniper, coriander and fennel botanicals with a splash of Schweppes tonic.
Vice & Virtue, 68 New Briggate, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 6NU.
Our journey continues just a few steps away at The Wrens, a Leeds institution since 1913. This classic pub is home to the 61a Gin Bar, where you can try over 60 gins from across the globe. There’s all the classics, like Masons and Tanqueray, but you can also try rarer vintages like Monkey 47 and Bath Tub Gin Navy. Every G&T has its perfect pairing and they’ve done the hard work for you with their ideal pours. For a sweet hit, try the Fifty Pounds gin with cucumber, pineapple juice, fresh lime and tonic water, or go for the Opihr Oriental Gin with honey, water and lemon juice.
The Wrens, 61a New Briggate, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS2 8JD.
Next, it’s a short wander over to Banyan Bar and Kitchen on City Square. They have not one, but two gin menus. Their classic Gin Paradise menu pairs each gin with Fever Tree tonic, herbs and fruits to bring out the flavours. But if you really want to make this an evening to remember, check out their Platinum Collection, which is packed with rare label gins. Top of the list has to be the Empress 1908, infused with butterfly pea blossom. It’s nicknamed ‘the colour-changing gin’, as it transforms from a rich indigo blue to soft pink when the tonic is added. Add juniper berries and a spritz of grapefruit for the ultimate G&T.
Banyan, The Old Post Office, City Square, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 2ES.
On to Lazy Lounge, where they have a simply astonishing gin list, with over 250 bottles for you to choose from. Whether you’re a fan of the classic styles or the aromatic novelties, their selection of tipples will leave you absolutely spoilt for choice. While most of their gins will set you back about £4 or £5 per serving, you can also sample some truly unique labels if you’re prepared to splash the cash, king of which is their Anty Gin. Made from red wood ants, this ultra-rare batch is £20 per shot – but it’s definitely one you can tell your friends about.
Lazy Lounge, 102 Wellington Street, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS1 4JJ.
Water Lane Boathouse
After Lazy Lounge, it’s a small detour around the waterfront to arrive at Water Lane Boathouse. They’ve really pushed the boat out (pardon the pun) on their gin selection. They’re all paired with a different style of Fever Tree tonic and handpicked garnishes. Whether you choose the Pink Rives with strawberry, basil and Mediterranean tonic, or the Sipsmith with lemon and lime, their long gin menu means there’s sure to be something for everyone.
Water Lane Boathouse, Canal Wharf, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS11 5PS.