Nestled underground, beneath The Rutland Hotel on Princes Street in the heart of Edinburgh’s West End, is a bar with a difference. Not only does Heads & Tales bar play host to more than 80 different varieties of gin but it is also home to two very special guests – Flora and Caledonia, two of Edinburgh Gin’s working stills.
The location of the Edinburgh Gin Distillery within the same space as Heads & Tales not only gives the bar’s guests the rare opportunity to see gin distilling while they relax over a cocktail or two and provides participants in the Distillery’s tours with a great location for an after-party, but also allows the Edinburgh Gin and Heads & Tales teams the chance to share knowledge, try new recipes and mix old and new styles of gin.
The name Heads & Tales in fact takes direct inspiration from the distilling process – and we’re not talking about flipping coins here. When you are making a spirit it is all about turning sugar into alcohol, the second part of the distillate is called heads which are high in ethanol and the last part taken is called the tails.
As the bar’s Business Development and Events Manager Mhari Raw explains: “We took this concept and made it our own, infusing our concept and atmosphere of somewhere you can sit and catch up telling tales – so Heads & Tales was born!”
The bar itself is a cosy establishment with many nooks and comfortable seating. The team at Heads & Tales pride themselves on being very upbeat and friendly as well as innovative, always looking for new ways to experiment with new blends, methods and cocktails. There is a dynamic selection of gin available with something suitable for all tastes.
There is also the exciting opportunity to create your own gin cocktail with the ‘Gin-It-Yourself’, or ‘G-I-Y’ menu. Guests can select their favourite gin brand, flavours, mixer, garnish and even glassware to build their ideal tipple from scratch, which sounds like a lot of fun to us!
As well as all that lovely gin, Heads & Tales also offers some fine Scottish fare such as haggis bon-bons and cheese platters, which go down swimmingly with a few drinks.
So next time you find yourself in Edinburgh, why not make like Alice and disappear down the rabbit hole into this ginny wonderland – you’re sure to find something that demands ‘drink me!’.
Signature Gin Cocktail
A sophisticated, foaming, fruity concoction, made with Edinburgh Gin, violet, blueberries, citrus, elderflower tonic and Prosecco.