Festival Spirits

The Hebridean Celtic Festival, held in the town of Stornoway not far to our north, is a real don’t-miss date in our island calendar. For one week during the summer each year, tribes of music lovers make their way to these shores to enjoy a Celtic celebration of roots and song. From the big tents of the Lews Castle grounds to the bars and outlying fringe venues, it’s a great gathering of good folk and fine music drawn from far and wide.

We’ve been delighted to play our part in bringing even more good spirits to the proceedings, starting off last Monday as we opened our first ever pop-up shop in the Lewis harbour town. Our bespoke build of well-lit wood displayed wonderful rows of our Isle of Harris Gin and allowed festival goers to stock up on supplies without travelling to Tarbert. It’s proved to be a popular destination for attendees as Shona Macleod from our team tells us…

    

“We’ve been so busy, sharing our story and selling gin to people from all over the world. The festival is such a popular event and not just for islanders! The shop has been a big success and we’ve really enjoyed ourselves despite all the hecticness.”

And, right in the heart of the action, we’re also to be found inside the festival grounds serving those in need of refreshment with tasting sessions held at ‘Julie’s Bar’ on both Friday and Saturday. 

We were keen to keep our local Hearachs happy too, so this afternoon the distillery played host to a fringe event with a live performance from the Festival Ceilidh Trailer musicians right by our peat fire. And as if that wasn’t enough there was also a delicious cookery demonstration featuring seasonably available local produce which featured our Isle of Harris gin. 

   

Delivered in inimitable style by acclaimed local food gurus Alasdair Macleod and Maggie Mackenzie, we’ve been enjoying delicious taster sessions throughout the afternoon. From seared scallops with a Harris Gin & Butter sauce and Gravadlax cured with Harris Gin to traditional fried herring and oatmeal and Harris Gin marinated lamb, it was a real feast for the senses.

The next two nights are the big parties in the main arenas with performances by the likes of island musicians Julie Fowlis, Astrid and Runrig and plenty more talent from much further afield, so we’re looking forward to letting our hair down once all the hard work is done. We islanders never need much of an excuse for a ceilidh so when a festival of this size presents itself we're making sure we take full advantage!

 

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