Grabbing a drink at the airport usually means sitting in an overcrowded bar amid angsty travelers and tons of luggage, sipping an overpriced, watery cocktail during massive delays. Now, at Greater London’s Gatwick airport, jet-setting travelers can sip craft cocktails made with gin distilled on site.
Named after a 17th-century English botanist who lived near the modern-day airport’s site, The Nicholas Culpeper is the world’s first airport gin distillery. The bar serves craft cocktails made with small-batch Nicholas Culpeper London dry gin, as well as a variety of gin-friendly foods (chorizo scotch egg, anyone?). Customers can view the gleaming copper-and-steel still from the seating area as they eat and drink.
The gin itself is packed full of botanicals—more than twice the quantity found in typical gins—and sounds like a dream. “Almost immediately as the glass is lifted, juniper and lemongrass hit the nose followed by sweet cassia and cardamom that balances the astringency of the juniper. After sipping, you’ll discover light floral notes coming from the coriander seeds and cloves. The complex and subtle combination of licorice and angelica root linger in the mouth,” according to the bar’s drink menu.
If the gin isn’t your thing, the bar stocks other spirits, as well as beer and wine, to calm your traveler’s nerves.
The bar and distillery are located before security, so travelers can’t purchase any gin to take with them on flights, unless they’re prepared to leave room in their checked bags. But those leaving the airport can purchase bottles to take home or along on their travels.