Auckland’s best-loved bars and restaurants are sharing their hosting hacks with Aucklanders this month during the East Imperial Gin Jubilee. Unleashing 24 of the world’s best gins across your favourite bars and restaurants around New Zealand, with parties, pop-ups, master classes and gin tours, there's experiences abound.

From 3 February, 17 city centre bars and restaurants are inviting the public to get amongst it and discover new and wonderful gin-based concoctions. You can also jump online to vote for the best gin cocktail in the city. 

The festival will wrap up on 24 February. Catch all the highlights and sample some of the top creations from around the country, at the Gin Lane Extravaganza on the 11th of March, plus witness the crowning of NZ’s best G&T!

Gin lovers in the city centre will be spoilt for choice with 17 great bars and restaurants taking part. Each of these establishments have created their own unique creations in celebration of the jubilee, and one that has so far caught our attention includes The Churchill's 'Betty Crockers “Pie Plant” Fizz' - taking inspiration from Betty Crocker's 1950s Cookbook they have created a Rhubarb & Custard gin fizz made with Salted Butter Washed 1919 Classic Gin, homemade lemon cordial, aquafaba, East Imperial rhubarb crumble tonic and garnished with custard shortbread. 

In addition to delicious new cocktails, you can also head along to the Gin Jubilee Gin Rambles event where you'll head on a gin-infused walk through the city centre and enjoy the best our bars have to offer. See more info, here.

Whether you're an experienced gin connoisseur, or just looking to try some crisp flavours then you're certain to have a great time throughout the East Imperial Gin Jubilee.

Participating venues in the Heart of the City:
Bar Albert, Ahi, Rooftop at QT, Everybody's, Captain's Bar, MoVida, Bar Non Solo, HI/SO Rooftop Bar, The Lula Inn, The Churchill, Caretaker, MASU by Nic Watt, FISH Restaurant, My Bar, Ebisu, The Parasol & Swing Company, Reign & Pour


Help East Imperial decide the best Gin Cocktail in the city centre... they’ll be giving away spot prizes every week!

  • Snap the cocktail
  • Tag the bar
  • Tag #ginjubilee2023
  • Follow @GinJubilee & @EastImperial

Each cocktail will be individually judged by East Imperial’s team of mixologists and brand ambassadors throughout the Gin Jubilee festival and those scores will be combined with the Instagram votes for the grand total.

So shout out your favourite bars and bartenders to help them to be crowned the city’s best Gin Cocktail and help get them to the finale!


Gin Jubilee Gin Cocktails

Ahi | Whakataa
Hayman's Sloe Gin, East Imperial Yuzu Lemonade, 15ml Umeshu, 3 Dashes of Peychaud's Bitters, garnished with an orange slice and straw, built and served in a Collins glass.

Bar Albert | Jubilee Ave
The Botanist gin, East Imperial Old World Tonic, Caraway and barley malt Old World Tonic Syrup, garnished with an orange twist.

Bar Non Solo | Kiwiana
Four Pillars Navy Strength; East Imperial Old World Tonic; Kiwi & Lime Cordial, Dolin Dry, garnished with a Kiwi fruit leather, 

CARETAKER | Grey Skies
Fords Gin, East Imperial Tonic, Italicus, dash of lemon, orange bitters, grapefruit twist in the shaker, short shake, garnished with a Grapefruit twist. 

Created by Ryan Oliver from Caretaker. This drink ramps up the GnT with elements of Earl grey and Grapefruit oils (from the skin) to give a length to the drink via the bitterness to balance it's wonderful citrus components.

Ebisu | Maiko Smash
Warner's Rhubarb Gin, East Imperial Yuzu Tonic, Peach Liqueur, Shiso (Japanese perilla leaf) Juice, Basil

Everybody's | A Slice of Lemon 
Malf con Limone, East Imperial Yuzu Yonic, Lemon Foam, curd

An experience in lemon, the original g&t garnish

HI/SO | SO/ Gingerly 
This cocktail is inspired by the fragrant nose of savoury and citrus palate from the Light house barrel aged gin, which underlines the Asian fusion culture in the brand So/. Thus, using Yuzu, Ginger and Honey. 

Lighthouse Barrel Rested Gin, East Imperial Yuzu Tonic, Ginger Honey Shrub, Lemon, Granished With Rosemary.

Hilton Akl (Fish) | Melange
Coming from the classic porn star martini, telling a story of forbidden love between a Pacific Islander and a New Zealander. Passionfruit and Grapefruit are the Stars of this drink. A love started in Marlborough, where Roots was created. This gin balances grapefruit with rose flowers. The vanilla scent of these flowers adds another note to the garnish. Metaphorically the child of this forbidden love, “Melange”.

Roots Gin, East Imperial Grapefruit Soda, Passion fruit puree, Vanilla Essence, garnished with edible flowers.

MASU | Trinity G&T
Hayman's London dry gin, East imperial tonic water, Housemade Japanese acid fluid (yuzu vinegar, concentrated Sake, matcha, clarified with Greek yogurt), served with deoxygenated ice.

Using the traditional ingredients from the UK, New Zealand and Japan, Hayman's London dry gin and East Imperial Tonic Water, acidity made from Yuzu, Sake & Matcha.  Sansho and Shiso and the 3 different country's classic flavors combine perfectly. 

Lula Inn | Davy Jones Bramble

Scapegrace Black, East Imperial Grapefruit Soda, Blackberry Shrub, lemon juice, garnished with dried grapefruit & blackberries. 

Cocktail Story: Davy Jones’ Bramble

Gathering the strange new fruits from the voyage, your cook blends together blackberries from back home in good ol Blighty, strange “grapefruits” from Barbados you’d stored away in the hold, a squeeze of lemon (a staple to hold the scurvy at bay) and your final officers’ rations of Scapegrace gin – no longer needed to fight illness but instead to be used in celebration at your good fortune.

The Lula Inn are taking back the traditional meaning of ‘pushing the boat out’ and encouraging you to get your sailors together for a juniper journey at your favourite seaside spot, with a Davy Jones’ Bramble at Lula’s.

MoVida | Bebida Antes de la Cena
Four Pillars Rare Dry, East Imperial Royal Botanic Tonic, Prosecco Cordial, Fino Sherry
Rosemary (Garnish)

My Bar | Nana's Ruin
Nana's Ruin, Whitley Neill Blood Orange gin, East Imperial Yuzu Lemonade, Italicus, served in a wine glass over ice, with an orange wedge and rosemary sprig to garnish.

Nana always liked a tipple or two over lunch while sitting in her garden. After having travelled to Italy in her ""younger days"" she developed a love for gin and the occasional spritz. Being a kiwi at heart and not always being able to have a spritz at home, she improvised with Sparkling Duet. So this is a toast to Nana's love for gin, the woman who got me drinking gin and tonic, even if I was too young to appreciate it at the time."

Onslow | The Elixir
Tanqueray, Palo Santo and Cardamom infused East Imperial Old World Tonic, Fenugreek Tincture, garnished with Red Turmeric Cavier. 

The Gin and Tonic has had a long journey in its evolution to the beverage enjoyed around the world today. It all started as a form of medicine that tasted highly bitter and the officers of the East India company added sugar, water lime and gin to make it more palatable. Today bars and restaurants around the world try adding different ingredients to favour different palates, cater to seasonal ingredients and showcase different stories. With this entry, I wished to showcase an interesting form of the Gin & Tonic by relighting the purpose of its creation. I wished to take it back to its roots by creating a Gin & Tonic cocktail using old world medicinal ingredients: Pala Santo, Fenugreek & Tumeric."

Park Hyatt - Captain's Bar | ROSIE
Strange Nature Gin, East Imperial Tonic, Rosemerry, Lemon Verbenna & Rose Syrup, Kiwifruit and, Strawberry Foam.

Abhiroop Singh from Captain’s Bar has created a thirst-quenching cocktail that reminded him of an 'ahhhh' feeling on a hot summer’s day. Inspired by the daringness of ingredients to create this gin, the chosen elements of this cocktails is based on fragrance of fruits and florals that use scent to trigger long lasting memories.

Rooftop at QT | Positi-Amo 
Malfy Can Arancia, East Imperial Royal Botanic Tonic, Cocchi Americano, Italicus, lemon juice, sugar syrup.

The best produce that Italy has to offer from lemon to Tarocco blood orange with lavender and gentian."

Reign & Pour | Saladitos Neptunia
Hendrick's Neptunia (base), East Imperial Tonic, "Saladitos" - salted spiced apricot, pineapple, seaweed.

The Churchill | Betty Crocker’s “Pie Plant” Fizz
Salted Butter Washed 1919 Classic Gin, East Imperial Rhubarb Crumble “Christmas” Tonic, Homemade Lemon Cordial, Aquafaba, garnished with custard shortbread.

In its early years, rhubarb was primarily used for pies, earning it’s nickname “pie plant"". Today, Rhubarbs are utilised in pies, tarts, and sauces and has a home in both, sweet and savoury dishes. Taking inspiration from Betty Crocker's 1950s Cookbook we have created a Rhubarb & Custard gin fizz showcasing an amazing culinary ingredient used by chefs across the world.

The Parasol & Swing Company | Rare Imperial
Four Pillars Rare Dry, East Imperial Burma Tonic, Palo Santo, Rosé & Peach Reduction, Garnish: Peach & Rosé Pearls.

'More than just good drinks. The Parasol & Swing Company is about enjoying yourself in the best environment, listening to great music, with one of the best views in the country'

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Last updated: 03 October 2019