Gin festival could be just the tonic the town needs

The rehabilitation of the “mother’s ruin” of old, to the sophisticated G&T and martini cocktails continues as the gin boom reaches new heights in taste and trendiness.

Kirkcaldy entrepreneur Carlo Valente is hosting Kirkcaldy's first gin festival at the Adam Smith Theatre on Saturday, April 20. Pic: George McLuskie.

Now Kirkcaldy can sit back and sip in style with a knowing chin-chin when the town hosts its first festival, ‘It’s Gin Time’, next month to celebrate and promote the drink.

The event at the Adam Smith Theatre is being hosted by entrepreneur Carlo Valente, co-founder of VC2 Brands and the creator of the acclaimed Boe Violet Gin.

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There will be samples of some of the world’s best gins available, and, along with over 50 varieties on show, there will also be a selection of vodkas and rums.

Carlo Valente is hosting the town's first gin festival. Pic: George McLuskie.

Those attending will be able to browse 15 stalls and you can expect a busy, fizzy time at the on-site Prosecco bar.

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Carlo Valente is the creator of the Boe Gin range and he came up with the innovative violet coloured gin, smelling of sweet violets, which is now served in over 10,000 pubs in the UK, as well as such prestigious venues as Gleneagles Hotel, The Balmoral and Tiger Lily in Edinburgh.

But it won’t just be about tasting the tipples. There will be an opportunity to meet the people behind the exclusive brands and to take in talks from some of the industry’s experts.

Carlo, came up with the idea to host Kirkcaldy’s first gin festival two years ago, but it took that long for the idea to distil into reality.

He said: “I wanted to have it in the Adam Smith Theatre. But, at the time, there was an issue with the licence and it needed to be changed so alcohol could be sold on the premises.

“That has been sorted now and the timing was right, so I decided to go ahead with the festival.

“Ticket sales have been going well so far and I think this event could be really good for Kirkcaldy.”

Carlo (56) is from Kirkcaldy and has been involved in the drinks business most of his adult life.

He owned and ran Heroes pub in Kirkcaldy in the 1980s and ’90s, which was located in the west end of the High Street.

He left the pub business to start a drinks company in 2002 and his vision and creativity have made an impact on the UK drinks market for almost two decades with flavoured vodkas, ciders, craft beers and gin.

It wasn’t until some years later the gin boom took hold and Carlo came up with the innovative violet coloured gin, smelling of sweet violets, which is now served in over 10,000 pubs in the UK, as well as such prestigious venues as Gleneagles Hotel, The Balmoral and Tiger Lily in Edinburgh.

Tickets for ‘It’s Gin Time’ at the Adam Smith Theatre on Saturday, April 20, are available from the box office or online at www.onfife.com. Two sessions are available, from 1-4pm and 5-8pm.