Gin & Jazz Festival 2023

24th May 2023

Returning to The Pantiles this weekend is the incredibly popular free-to-attend Gin and Jazz Festival!

The festival will be held from 11am to 10pm on Saturday 27th May and 11am to 5pm on Sunday 28th May, with over 150 gins from over 30 local and national producers. There will also be product sampling, sparkling wine, a special selection of Champagnes and street food. Plus, fantastic live music and entertainment.

The National Alcoholic Drink of England

Gin is a distilled alcoholic drink that derives its flavour from juniper berries. The spirit originated as a medicinal liquid made by monks in Europe, especially in Italy and the Netherlands. Gin became widespread after 1688 and the Glorious Revolution led by William of Orange and the restrictions that followed on French brandy. Gin then emerged as the national alcoholic drink of England.

Fun Facts about Gin

  • The spirit doesn’t have a shelf life
  • Gin doesn’t freeze
  • It is one of the healthiest spirits you can drink (juniper berries are super fruits)
  • It has been said that the Royal family clean their silverware with gin!
  • British naval officers used to get a daily ration of gin
  • The Philippines consumes the most gin per capita
  • Gin has been called many names over the years including mother’s ruin, ladies delight and flashes of lightning
  • Winston Churchill once said: “The gin and tonic has saved more Englishmen’s lives and minds than all the doctors in the Empire”

All that Jazz

Jazz originated from New Orleans in Louisiana, but its roots can be found in the musical traditions of both Africa and Europe.The word ‘jazz’ actually derives from a Creole word that means African dance, but also refers to a form of dance that first appeared in a March 1913 edition of the San Francisco Bulletin.

This appearance expedited jazz’s appeal and cemented it as a popular music genre associated with dancing and nightlife.

Jazz on The Pantiles

Owing to the popularity of this music genre, Jazz on The Pantiles was conceived and takes place on the iconic bandstand every Thursday night throughout the summer months.

The weekly shows have attracted an array of local, national and international talent over time, with the audience being just as diverse. Performers have included The Skatonics, Spice Fusion, Derek Nash, The Vince Dunn Orchestra and many more.

In the past, Jazz on The Pantiles has won awards – most notably in the Tourism Event/Festival of the Year category at The Beautiful South Awards, securing a silver.

The Perfect Combination!

Combining the nation’s favourite tipple with the timeless joy of jazz seemed a no brainer, hence why the Gin & Jazz Festival at The Pantiles was born!

The festival is free to attend and is a great opportunity to sample some of the best gins, and other drinks, in the country. There will be gins to suit every taste, from the classic straight up, to more unusual flavours. You can also learn about the different gin making processes and how to make your own gin cocktails.

In addition to the fabulous tipples, there will also be a wide range of food stalls to choose from. From Thai curry to chips and Moroccan tagine to macarons, you’ll be spoilt for choice on ways to keep hunger at bay.

Top tips on how to enjoy the festival:

  • Arrive early to avoid the crowds
  • Wear comfortable shoes as you may be on your feet for a while!
  • Bring a bottle of water to stay hydrated
  • Don’t forget to capture your festival moments and tag us in on social media!

The Pantiles Gin & Jazz Festival is a great way to spend a weekend in Royal Tunbridge wells, and we can’t wait to welcome you!