The Café Gannet restaurant in Mossel Bay, in proud association with Inverroche Distillery, launched their Gin School in mid-March. The School offers visitors the opportunity to craft their own unique bottle of gin during their visit, sample gins from the leading artisanal producer in South Africa and learn more about local fynbos.

Inverroche is well known for three signature gins, The Classic, Verdant & Amber of the Fynbos Collection – each showcasing unique botanical species only found in the Western Cape Floral Kingdom. These local plants have long been used by indigenous people, both for medicinal and culinary purposes.

The name Inverroche is made up of the Gaelic word “inver” (confluence of the waters, in this case the Goukou River and Indian Ocean) to celebrate the Scott’s Highland heritage and “roche” (French for rock) for their Huguenot roots. The rock in question is limestone and reaches deep into the earth’s crust below the river and estate forming an abundant aquifer with lime-rich water. The logo is designed to evoke fynbos flower petals and depict the interaction between the water and limestone which gave rise to the fynbos and sustains it still. Inverroche was the first local gin produced in South Africa.

The School features a fynbos garden offering visitors the opportunity, both to learn more about these plants and to harvest the fine leaves for use in their own gin creation. Symbolising our connection and ever close proximity to nature.

The gin making journey teaches guests more about the history and origins of gin, the story of Inverroche and how the Founder, Lorna Scott, experimented determinedly to create their autograph collection, the distilling process and how to go about designing your own original gin from scratch.

On arrival guests are greeted with a cocktail, and during the distilling process a tutored gin tasting is also presented – while you view the process in the distinctive copper pot still. And, perhaps most importantly each imaginative scholar leaves with their very own creation, to appreciate, or flaunt, at their own leisure.

Gin and food pairings are also offered daily. Where canapés created by the chef highlight either local South African ingredients or traditional meals. Lightly smoked rooibos salmon nigiri and “vetkoek” with bobotie mince and zesty spekboom chutney are already proving to be firm favourites.

The school is housed in the Old Post Office Tree Square, neighbouring the Dias Museum & Protea Hotel by Marriott Mossel Bay. The hotel’s Ochre Building, or Ochre Barn, was built circa 1847 for the Barry & Nephews trading company and is one of the earliest permanent buildings in Mossel Bay.

Classes are offered twice daily and can accommodate anywhere from one to 36 guests at a time. Bookings for individuals can be made on the day but earlier bookings are recommended for larger groups.

The Gin School team are excited to embark on this sensational gin voyage with gin enthusiasts, connoisseurs and beginners alike.


Inverroche Distillery produces luxury brands of the handcrafted liquor variety. The portfolio currently includes: The Fynbos Collection consisting of Classic, Verdant and Amber Gin, 7-year-old Bootstrap Rum, Limestone Rum Aged 10 Years, Botanique Brandy Liqueur, Café Coco Liqueur, Marmalade Liqueur and Coco Carissa of The Creative Collection.

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