We’re often asked what it’s like to work at Gin Festival, well if you're interested in an engaging career and love gin then read on.
People want to know what it's really like to work for Gin Festival and we get asked questions about the behind the scenes life a lot. The main questions we usually encounter are:
Is there gin everywhere?
Do you just drink all the time?
As a big group of gin-lovers, we’re very lucky - there is actually gin everywhere! From our warehouse, to office shelves, the kitchen and our desks (for fact-checking purposes only, obviously), gin makes quite the appearance in our workplace. While we do have the odd, after work tasting (and the very occasional new gin or cocktail tester in the day), we don’t work whilst sozzled!
Amongst all the hustle and bustle of our festivals, the steadily flowing gin and general gin chat, we’re often asked what it’s like to be part of the Gin Festival team. The short answer? It’s a very busy dream come true; we work hard but we have a lot of fun!
And the long answer? Well, no two days at Gin Festival are the same! Whether we’re at an event or back in the office, there’s no such thing as a standard day but if you’d like to know the kinds of things that we get up to, about what goes into making a Gin Festival the event that you know and love, then keep reading!
A gin festival might seem simple (gin in, gin served, bottles out, it’s easy) but in reality, we have a dedicated team of gin-loving staff organising and running the events, bravely testing new gins and exploring different venues all over the country.
On any given day, there might be just two people in the events office, wondering where the rest of their team are. The rest of the team will be dotted around the country, on site visits and training days, learning more about gin and sourcing the perfect garnish.
Our events require a lot of hard work, attention to details and months of forward planning. After that, we’ll spend a couple of days immediately before a festival organising the last bits and pieces, repacking boxes, building bigger and better bars, making cocktails and chatting away before it’s all on hands on deck and it’s time to load the vans and the two arctics that have just trundled up to the warehouse! All pallets safely secured, we jump in the van, stick the playlist on and enjoy a few hours of jokes, eclectic music and service station cups of tea.
Post-service station, pre-festival, we meet up with the rest of our team, the guys who aren’t based at Gin Festival HQ but work every event with us. Sometimes we’ll do this at the venue whilst we wait for the trucks to arrive, others we’ll meet up at the hotel then head out for food and a drink or two.
At set-up the anticipation is always palpable, we’re going to take what we know, what we love, and we’re going to turn it into something bigger and better. We’re going to make sure that our festival-goers have the best time, that they find their new favourite gin, have some great food and are wowed by musicians and magic and more! We want them to have the option to learn about the spirit, to meet new people or just have a fantastic day with their friends. All of this is going through our heads as we start to load in.
We carefully unload all of our precious gin, the bars and the dressing from the wagon and then we begin! We move as quickly as is safe, wheeling the pallets and cages into the venue maneuvering around corridors and lifts. We take everything to its pre-planned, assigned location and turn the empty building into a beautiful, gin-filled festival!
Before the attendees arrive, the brand reps (from the gin brands that we work closely with) arrive, set up their stands and say hello to the familiar faces dotted around the venue. Not too much time for a catch up here though, we’re all waiting for the main event - the festival-goers! We’ll be running around adding final touches, making sure everything we’ll need is to hand, that prep is completed and we’re all dressed up.
And then it happens, the festival opens! We welcome thousands of gin-drinkers, chat to them about everything under the sun (unsurprisingly, gin is a key topic), serve gin, make recommendations, tidy, coordinate stock, top up garnish, sort out lights and sound and keep an eye on ice. All the while, we’re each making sure that everyone is enjoying their gin and their festival experience as a whole. As a day session turns to an evening session, and the first day into the second, we maintain the same level of service and care - it doesn't matter when people attend the Gin Festival, they all deserve the same high standards and passion for gin.
It often seems that we’ve been in a venue forever, that we’ve always worked there, but the festival is still over too soon. Once we’ve said goodbye to the last attendee, we start to pack down. We’ve been on our feet for hours, and worked at our very best for a few days, but we pack everything away with the same care that it took to get it there.
Back to the hotel or back home, we chat about the highlights of the festival and what can be improved but this quickly turns to just chatting. About days in lieu and everyday life back home.
We get back, have a day or two off and then we go again! Gin life, there’s nothing quite like it.
We have big plans and big dreams. Gin Festival isn’t just a job, it’s a career that we’re all passionate about, and we work hard because we’re a relatively small (albeit growing) team and we rely on each other. It’s pretty cheesy to say so but we really are one, big, happy, gin family!
If you love gin and this sounds like it’s for you, then take a look at the vacancies we currently have on our careers page.
Bring the two loves of your life (your partner and gin) together with these 5 romantic gin cocktail recipes. Or just treat yourself, you don't need an excuse for gin!
Homemade syrups are a great way to add your favourite flavours to drinks, both boozy and not. Get started with this simple guide to making your own syrup.
Our #lovegin competition is over and wow, do our fans really love gin! Here are our favourite 9 photos of people who love gin.
Late last year we caught up with Will Edge, Greensand Ridge Distillery’s founder and distiller, to talk about being a distiller in a gin-crazed Britain and sustainability in spirits.