Highgate’s Sacred Gin goes from strength with bottle shop and virtual masterclasses

Sacred Gin which started in the ground floor of a Highgate house has now taken up residence in the H

Sacred Gin which started in the ground floor of a Highgate house has now taken up residence in the High Street with a bottle shop and tasting space - Credit: Archant

Started in a Highgate living room, the craft gin brand has grown into a global business which opened its first shop on the High Street during lockdown

Ian Hart the founder of Highgate's Sacred Gin

Ian Hart the founder of Highgate's Sacred Gin - Credit: Archant

Highgate’s favourite gin Sacred opened its first bricks and mortar shop on the High Street in June.

And co-owner Hilary Whitney says, despite launching during lockdown, it has been a huge success.

As an off licence they were classed as an essential shop, and they pivoted the business to offer virtual tastings.

“Across the food and drink industry people have become much more interested in provenance and quality - as we like to say, ‘drink less, but drink better,’ she said.

Sacred Gin

Sacred Gin - Credit: Archant

“When we first opened, we were still in lockdown and there was a sense of people treating themselves and making their evening drink into a bit of a ritual.”

She says Highgate’s shops have been well supported by the community during the pandemic, with even more footfall because people were working from home.

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“We have been very busy because of that. When we first opened, they were both curious to see what we had done with the building and delighted to have somewhere new to go. Highgate residents feel very strongly about the state of their High Street and the general consensus is that people are pleased - and relieved - to have a new independent trader in the Village.”

Her partner Ian Hart started Sacred in the living room and shed of their Talbot Road home back in 2009. The name derives from using Frankincense as one of the botanicals to flavour the spirit, and is a nod to Highgate’s famous cemetery.

“I feel we are adding to Highate’s rich history and making it an even more attractive destination,” added Whitney.

“In future, people can visit the Cemetery, wander around Waterlow Park, enjoy a tasting at the distillery, pop into the independent shops and enjoy a meal or a drink from a great choice of pubs.”

But Sacred is not just a local brand, over the past decade they have built it into a global business exporting a range of spirits all over the world.

Not only does the shop sell the full Sacred range, but they offer cocktail glasses and kits, wine, local beers and cider, and other spirits from Japanese whisky to American bourbons.

Their popular Make Your Own Gin experience, which includes a guide through the history of gin and a chance to blend your own bespoke gin is temporarily on hold but virtual events including a Gin, Martini, Negroni and cocktail masterclass will still run.

Participants receive a branded Sacred glass and 5 double measure (50ml) samples.

The expert-led masterclass include a history of gin and explanation of vacuum distillation, a chance to ask questions and a discount code for future purchases.

Sacred Gin, 50 Highgate High Street. www.sacredgin.com