A Gin-glish Country Garden Party…

As the sun finally makes an appearance in London, it feels as though summer is just around the corner. Here at The Brewery, there’s nothing we love more than celebrating the warmer months with annual summer parties in our courtyard, and this summer we’re pulling out all the stops and organising an English garden party like no other.

This summer’s party will see the courtyard transformed into a traditional, lush English garden in the heart of the city. Complete with planters, wisteria covered ceilings and an abundance of blooms, the marquees will make for an idyllic summer oasis for city dwellers in the height of summer.

To get you in the spirit of an English garden party, we’ve taken a look at the perfect summer drink renowned for its botanicals – gin. One of the most diverse liquors around, due to the fact that gin distillers are free to choose whichever botanicals they wish in the production process, they tend to distinguish their gin by varying the levels of botanicals they use. Although the plants and herbs that are added to gin are often dependent on where the gin has originated from, there are a few botanicals that nearly every gin producer adds:

Juniper berries

Described as being to gin what hops are to IPAs, gin is simply not gin without the addition of juniper –      the word gin itself is even derived from the it (from the French genièvre or the Dutch jenever). Dominantly pine-flavoured, and with varieties from all over the world, juniper berries tend to be fragrant and spicy, with a bittersweet taste.

Coriander seeds

Second in the list of the most important flavourings in gin is coriander seeds. With a complex taste, they provide a citrus top note to gin which is sometimes replaced with citrus peel as a less expensive option.

Angelica root

A key ingredient in the gin production process, angelica root holds the flavours of other botanicals together. With a nutty, sweet flavour, some say it tastes earthy and medicinal. Angelica seeds are also sometimes used in gin and add a slightly floral note instead.

Citrus peel

Both lemon peel and orange peels are used to flavour gin instead of the flesh, as the skin contains the majority of the fragrant and flavoursome oils. Both lemon and orange peel add a fresh citrusy flavour, depending on the type of lemon and orange, where they were grown, and whether they were dried or not!

Orris root

Mainly sourced from Italy, and with a taste that is likened to parma violets, distillers use orris root to ‘fix’ other botanical flavours and add perfumed notes to their gin. The root looks similar to ginger, and adds a woody, earthy flavour.

Aside from these typical botanicals that you can find in a classic London dry gin, there are so many more options to discover such as lemongrass, lavender and Douglas fir to name just a few. There really is a gin to suit everyone!

How to make the perfect gin and tonic

We couldn’t possibly write about gin without sharing our favourite way to serve it. Here are a few steps to the perfect G&T:

• Don’t just stick to lemons and limes when serving your G&T. Highlight the botanicals in your choice of gin by switching up the garnish. Grapefruit, citrus peel and cucumber work will with floral gins, whilst rhubarb and olive are great with dry gin.
• Drink your gin from a big, bowl shaped glass. This will help open up the flavours, as well as give you lots of room to fill the glass with large ice cubes which will melt slowly as to not dilute the taste.
• Whilst choosing the perfect gin is important, your choice of tonic is equally so. Using a below par tonic will only overwhelm the gin, so choose wisely!

If visions of cold gin and tonics paired with fresh botanicals have got you dreaming of an English garden party in the height of summer, why not enquire about our summer parties at The Brewery? As you enter into the luxuriously furnished marquee which has been transformed into a traditional English garden, you will be greeted with a cocktail on arrival before enjoying a delicious BBQ menu and unlimited beer, wine and soft drinks until 9pm. When the sun sets, head inside The Brewery where you can carry on the party into the night.

Ideal for companies of any size, all-inclusive packages are available for parties from 80-100. If you’d like to find out more about our 2018 summer parties, get in touch with us today!

11 important questions to ask your wedding venue before you book

Booking your dream wedding venue is not only one of the first priorities when planning a wedding, but it’s also the most significant decision you’ll make. With so much to consider, and with most venues requiring a deposit when booking, you’ll need to know you’re making the right decision for your big day.

It’s so easy to get carried away with excitement when looking at wedding venues, which is why it’s important to be prepared with a list of questions to ask when you visit. Here are some essential questions to ask your wedding venue before signing the dotted line. Happy venue hunting!

Wedding Venue Booking Basics

Is the venue available on the date?

If you have a particular date in mind for your wedding, make this your first question! It may seem a little obvious, but sometimes the date is just as important as the venue itself. Weekend dates in the warmer months get booked up early, so enquire with the venue before you even visit to avoid disappointment.

What’s included in the price?

Finding out exactly what’s included in the price is essential for your wedding budget and means you won’t get stung with any unexpected costs further down the line. Ask about the usual suspects; VAT, tables and chairs, staffing costs and the fee for the civil ceremony.

What’s the capacity?

Before sending out your ‘save the dates’, it’s important to know how many your venue can seat. Your guest list will be hugely dependant on the size of the venue, so get this information as soon as possible.

The services

Which rooms are licensed to hold the ceremony?

Having your ceremony and reception at the same location is convenient for both the couple and your guests and can save some money too. When you visit the venue, consider whether this is an option, and make sure you ask exactly which rooms you can get married in, so you can envisage the all-important ceremony.

Are there any restrictions?

From areas off-limits for photography, to sound limiters for DJs and bands, ask what restrictions your venue has in place. This could mean that you’re unable to decorate the venue just how you imagined, or party until the hour you want, so it’s an important question to ask from the outset.

Can the venue provide equipment?

If you’re planning on getting your guests on the dancefloor in the evening, make sure you enquire about the equipment that’s available at the venue. Consider the audio-visual equipment, electrical outputs and the lighting.

Does the venue have a dedicated wedding team and/ or coordinator?

Choosing a venue with a wedding coordinator means that the planning process is as stress-free as possible. An in-house member of staff will not only know the venue inside out, but what works well too. Enlisting their help will undoubtedly be priceless!

The food

Does the venue use an in-house caterer?

Some venues may charge an extra fee to use your own caterers, so make sure you have an idea of what catering you’re after before booking the venue. Many venues offer their own excellent in-house caterers, which are certainly worth looking at. If not, ask if they have a preferred list of suppliers.

How flexible is the menu?

Many couples choose to reflect their individuality through their menu choices, so it’s worth asking whether there is any flexibility with the food choices and if creating a bespoke menu is an option.

And everything in between…

Is there a plan for bad weather?

You can plan everything to the finest detail, but there’s just no predicting what the weather will do! Make sure your venue has a backup plan for rain and bad weather, and take a close look at this alternative space, too. You’ll need to love the backup plan just as much as you do the rest of the venue.

Is there nearby accommodation?

It’s always useful to find out if the venue has any nearby accommodation for both the couple and the guests. If the venue is in a remote area, you’ll need to do some research to ensure the closest accommodation is both convenient for your guests, and that it is available on your wedding date.

 

In the heart of London, The Brewery is a wedding venue like no other. Our wedding licence includes every one of our unique rooms within the venue and allows us to host your wedding ceremony and reception on-site for between 40 and 1,000 guests. Our dedicated wedding planner is on hand to guide you through the entire process, taking care of everything from the budget to the dietary requirements, meaning you can relax and enjoy the build up to your big day. Each room includes everything you need to create the wedding you envisage – from LED lighting, PA systems and wi-fi.

To find out more about having your wedding at The Brewery, get in touch. We’ll be more than happy to answer any questions you have!

How to plan a successful charity event

The power and influence of a good fundraising event is undeniable. Done right, a successful event can attract new supporters, engage existing ones and create awareness as well as the all-important revenue. However, raising the most money possible isn’t your only goal – first you’ll need to get people through the door.

Here are 10 steps you should be taking to ensure a successful charity event.

1. Define your goals

It goes without saying that in order to start planning, you’ll first need to be clear on who you’re raising money for and why. Decide who you’d like to attend, what sort of event you’d like it to be, and what you want to achieve, including a fundraising total. Making these decisions will pave the way for all your decisions and help you create a plan of action.

2. Create a budget

Your main goal, of course, is to raise funds, so it’s important to keep your costs down where possible. Creating a budget will help you plan your costs to ensure you ultimately raise more than you spend on the event. Remember to factor in some extra budget for unpredictable costs and include every single detail so you don’t get any surprises further down the line.

The Just Giving charity awards event at The Brewery in 2018

3. Know your target audience

Establishing at an early stage who you want to attend your event will make it easier for you to both plan and market it successfully. Consider whether your charity appeals to a particular audience, and then think about what kind of event they’re likely to want to attend.

4. Find the right venue

When it comes to choosing a venue for your charity event, make sure you’re armed with all the right questions. Will it accommodate the number of people you’re hoping will attend? What’s included in the venue? Think outside the box and look into quirky spaces- choosing a unique and interesting venue is likely to encourage attendees to come along and create a real ‘buzz’ around your event.

The bespoke and unique event design

5. Establish a theme

Marketing your event solely as a ‘fundraiser’ isn’t going to encourage people to come. Inspire potential supporters by giving them a reason to check out your event, always keeping your target audience in mind.  Whether you opt for a silent disco or a tea party, offering your guests the opportunity to attend a fun day or evening out for a good cause will undoubtedly increase ticket sales.

6. Spread the word

When it comes to charity and fundraising events, marketing is particularly crucial. Utilise the power of social media as well as other digital channels, such as email marketing and content marketing to save on printing costs, and make full use of your online contacts and connections. Make a Facebook event, use advertising across Twitter and Instagram to target your audience geographically, and create a sense of urgency that the event tickets are in high demand to encourage people to grab a ticket while they can!

7. Make use of sponsors

When working to a budget, gaining the support of sponsors is vital. Luckily, many companies will already have some budget set aside for supporting events such as yours in return for branding, so don’t be afraid to get out there and ask the question. Start with local businesses and any that are relevant to the charity, and make sure that you thank them and maintain the relationship once the event has passed.

James Cordon high-fives on the event stage

8. Think about the details

Once your big decisions have been made, it’s time to consider the logistical details of the event. From layout and design to entry and exits, you’ll need to plan out everything in advance. Some venues for charity events will be able to take care of this for you, so make sure you ask what’s included at an early stage.

9. Choose your method of collecting donations

Try not to limit how you collect your donations, as you’ll want to make the donation process as easy as possible for your supporters. Choose an online ticketing platform for digital payments, and for those who can’t attend, or even for those that feel inspired whilst at your event, set up a ‘text to donate’ facility for easy and quick donations.

Johnny Vaughan comparing an event

10. Remember to say thank you

Whether you put together a thank you speech for the event, show appreciation on a website or send out a letter once the event is over, it’s important to express your gratitude for the generosity of your donors and sponsors. Recognition can even encourage future help and involvements, as well as solidifying relationships that can benefit both parties in the long-run.

 

The Brewery is a highly versatile event space which can a truly memorable backdrop for your charity event. We know that the goal of every event is different, and regardless of what you’re setting out to achieve, a dedicated member of our team will be at hand throughout the planning process, with your objectives as a priority. If you’re looking for a venue to hold your next charity fundraising event, get in touch with us today!

4 Reasons to Think about Booking Your Christmas Party Now

 

It may feel as though Christmas has only just come to an end, but Spring is just around the corner. With busy working schedules and calendars already getting filled way into 2018, although you may want to believe it, the festive period will roll around again before you know it.

With the sun just beginning to make an appearance and Easter eggs only just starting to appear on shops shelves, is Spring too early to start thinking about your Christmas party? In short, the answer is no. Not convinced? Here’s why we think it’s a good idea to get your party planning hat on and book your Christmas party venue now.

1.      You can pick the best venue

There are so many factors to consider when choosing your Christmas party venue; the size of the room, the location, the theme, the facilities to name just a few. Give yourself plenty of time to do your research to find the perfect venue for your company, and give yourself more chance of securing the ideal venue by getting ahead of the rest and booking early. You’ll be surprised just how early the most popular Christmas party venues get booked up. Many companies will already be searching for their party venues, so get in there early to make sure you don’t only secure the Christmas party venue in the most demand, but the best date too.

2.      More people are likely to attend

Christmas is an extremely busy time for everyone and getting a full guest list for your Christmas party is always going to be a challenge. Securing a venue and date for your Christmas party early means you can start the comms early too, so your guests can get the date in their diaries and keep it free from other festive commitments. Getting your venue booked in advance is also great for creating a real buzz, as you’ll have plenty of time to promote the event and get your attendees excited, which will in turn boost morale and keep spirits high.

3.      It allows your guests to prepare

Regardless of whether you choose a venue nearby or a little further afield, it’s more than likely that some of the attendees will want to book accommodation for the night of the party. The sooner your guests are aware of the venue and date of your Christmas party, they have the choice to book a hotel room for the night, as well as any transport they may need to get there and back.

 

4.      You’ll save yourself a lot of stress!

There’s no denying that planning a Christmas party can be stressful, especially if you’ve left it to the last minute. The venue is the biggest element of your Christmas party, so once it’s been booked, you’ll be able to relax (for a while!) and focus on the smaller arrangements instead. Better still, making Christmas planning a priority in low season allows you to free up some time at the busiest time of the working year.

 

A Grade II listed building in the heart of London, The Brewery is a completely unique Christmas party venue. Boasting incredible themes, performers, award-winning chefs, and stunning design, a Christmas party in The Brewery is like no other. Our cast of specialist entertainers provide the spectacle, while our masterful chefs delight guests with a menu unlike anything you’ve ever tasted before. Able to host all-inclusive parties from 35 to 1500 guests, planning your event is simple. For more information about booking your Christmas party, contact us today.

5 creative ways to use sponsorship at your event

Using augmented reality at an event

Planning an event is an exciting time. You have your vision, your creative juices are flowing, and you can’t wait to put your plans into motion. Getting the ball rolling isn’t always that easy, though. If you have big ideas, you may need a budget to match, and this is where sponsorship comes in.

Sponsors can help you get your ideas off the ground in more ways than one, by providing cash to help fund your event, or perhaps offering benefits and services such as free catering. However, the days of traditional sponsorship branding are over, and banners, booths and logos are no longer making the cut, as attendees are getting harder to impress than ever before. If you want to make an impact with sponsorship at your event, you’re going to have to think outside the box to excite your attendees, and your sponsors alike.

Here are 5 of our favourite unique and interesting ways to use sponsorship at your next event:

Virtual and augmented reality

This isn’t the first time we’ve raved about the power of VR and AR, and it’s easy to see why. Technology is becoming more and more commonplace at events, giving brands more opportunity to opt for (and implement) high-tech options to ‘wow’ the guests. Virtual reality is particularly effective when it comes to product demonstrations or services that would be impossible to show in an event environment.

Photo booths

Providing a fun and free photo opportunity at your event isn’t just great for entertaining your guests, it’s also an easy and effective way of promoting your sponsors. Event attendees love to take advantage of these fun and interactive activities, and all it takes to turn a photo booth into a branded area is add a bright, branded backdrop, product related props, or branded ‘Instagram’ style frames. Better still, attendees are more than likely to share their images across social networks to further increase the reach far beyond the event itself.

Taking photos at an event

Live streaming

Offering sponsored live streaming of your event doesn’t just provide an innovative branding opportunity, but it also allows those who couldn’t attend take part. Making your absent and virtual ‘guests’ feel valued, this technique also means that the brand awareness of the sponsor will be elevated, reaching more people than they would have within the four walls of the venue.

Dedicated areas

Setting aside a room or area for your sponsor is a great way of getting your attendees engaged with the brand. Whether that be a chill-out lounge or even a ‘play area’ equipped with giant games, sponsors have a great opportunity to interact with the guests and form memorable experiences in these designated areas. Opportunities for branding are also rich if you’re using this approach- you can use anything from cushions, chairs and tables to reflect the brand, and of course products and marketing materials can be placed in a non-obtrusive way for your attendees to discover at their leisure.

Creative use of branding

Social media

When it comes to sponsoring an event, the power of social media should never be underestimated! Two of the most popular social media platforms that are used by attendees during events are Snapchat and Twitter, so make sure your sponsors are present online and keeping active throughout your event. A great way of harnessing the influence of Snapchat is by creating a branded and customised geofilter for your event, which will both engage and entertain your guests, as well as spread awareness of your sponsors and the event to all of their followers.

Using creative sponsorship at your event is an effective way of getting results- engaged attendees are far more likely to connect with a brand that are offering something a little bit extra. At The Brewery, we host innovative events for leading global brands, and are here to help with any branding and sponsorship ideas that you’d like to turn into reality.

Want to know more about how we can help you with creative sponsorship? Get in touch today!

How to ‘wow’ your guests with food at your event

An example of incredible guest food

Here at The Brewery, we’ve mentioned time and time again the importance of good food at an event. Most meetings and events include food, and in some cases, the whole event revolves around a meal, so why shouldn’t it be one of the core factors when planning your event?

To put it simply, putting thought and consideration into your event goes a long way. Great food can not only be a great talking point, but it can also be the reason your event is remembered. Better still, provide an unforgettable menu and you have yourself an event that will stick in your guest’s minds for all the right reasons. Get your food right, and your delegates will feel valued, get it wrong, and you may even disengage your guests.

Here’s how to ‘wow’ your guests with the menu at your next event!

Consider the style of event

The very first thing you need to think about when it comes to creating your event menu is what style of event you’re planning to have. Would you like to create a relaxed atmosphere in which your guests wander around the venue, and eat when they wish? Or are you holding a more formal event with a sit-down meal? Once these decisions have been made, the planning process will become a lot more straight forward, and the many options less daunting.

Your agenda and the scheduling of the event is really important when considering the food you serve too – for example, if your event starts early in the evening and your guests may be coming straight from the office, they’re likely to be hungry and hoping for appetizers when they arrive! Keep your guests at the forefront of your mind when planning your menu, and you’re sure to impress.

Impressively presented food

Cater for everyone

Today, there are more dietary concerns than ever before, and it’s highly likely that you’ll come across some of them at your event, whether that be vegetarians, vegans, gluten-free or kosher. Before the event, perhaps as part of the signing up process, make sure you ask your delegates whether they have any dietary requirements so that you can put just as much time and thought into creating these dishes than the rest of the menu to ensure your guests feel considered.

A specially tailored menu item

Think outside the box

Choosing your menu is a great opportunity to reflect your company through the food you serve. Show your attendees that you’re inspirational and creative by thinking outside the box rather than offering up a repetitive menu that they’ve eaten time and time again at events beforehand.

Creating a bespoke menu is not only a great way to tailor the food specifically to the event itself, but also to add something a little special to reflect the uniqueness of your company. Offering delicious and interesting food options is an excellent way of ensuring that you don’t just create an event, but an ‘event experience’ for your guests.

Here at The Brewery, we recognise that food is one of the most important aspects of your event, and pay particular attention to providing outstanding cuisine. Our award-winning chefs can design bespoke menus to suit the preferences of both your company and the event you have in mind, and make sure we treat every event in its own merits, despite hosting over 450 events a year!

Want to find out more about how The Brewery can detach the stigma that comes with the phrase ‘banqueting food’? Take a read of our food and drink brochure, or get in touch today.

World Cup 2018 Screenings

It’s World Cup year and we are already getting our hopes up for an England win, this is the year, we can feel it! If you want to get your team together and cheer England on (or any other country that you may support) you can hire The Brewery for a private World Cup screening. We have a selection of spaces available for hire that can host parties from 30 – 700 guests, the packages are all inclusive and you can see what is included below. If you would like more information or would like to check availability then please get in touch here.

The Knowledge Guild: Game-Changers: People, Ideas & Inventions That Disrupted The World

The first Knowledge Guild conference of the year saw us welcome a group of inspiring individuals who threw out the rule book and changed the game for the better.

The fascinating speakers included Lord Sebastian Coe, President of the IAAF, Olympic Champion & Chairman of London 2012; Marc Koska, inventor of the K1 Auto-Disable Syringe responsible for saving countless lives; Lorraine Heggessey, CEO of The Royal Foundation & first female Controller of BBC One; and Ade Adepitan, TV presenter & Team GB Wheelchair Basketball player. You can watch the highlights video here to see what they said.

The Brewery, on London’s Chiswell Street, has announced Milena Gorska as wedding and private event planner.

Milena joins from, One Aldwych, London, where she was groups & events executive and responsible for executing bespoke weddings and social events. Having also previously worked in event management roles at Intercontinental, London Westminster, Milena brings a wealth of creativity and flair for special occasions to her new role at The Brewery.

Working alongside senior members of The Brewery’s team, Milena will manage and oversee the delivery of all weddings and private events held at the venue, from new enquiries and conversions to supporting throughout the event planning process. Milena will also be responsible for the development of The Brewery’s dedicated wedding brand ‘Proposal’, working alongside the creative director on all marketing activity and continuing to establish the venue as market leaders in tailored service.

James Varah, commercial director at The Brewery commented; “This year has been one of growth for the whole team at The Brewery and Milena will no doubt make a fantastic addition to an already strong group. Milena’s experience and passion will bring a new approach to the delivery and strategic direction of weddings and private events and we are excited for couples to experience a Brewery inspired wedding.”

Milena Gorska, wedding and private events planner at The Brewery added; “I’m really excited to be starting a new journey at The Brewery. The quality of service and the dedication of the team made it an obvious choice for me. I’m looking forward to working with the venues impressive roster of suppliers to deliver incredible experiences for our couples and guests.

How to use Event Design at your next event

 

There’s a lot more to event design than making a space look nice. Done right, a well designed event can transform both the look and atmosphere of a venue, and in turn bring it to life. Event design can encompass everything from flooring to staging and branding- everything it takes to create an event that will be talked about for years to come.

In our fast-paced world, and one that’s crammed full of business events all around the calendar, your event needs to grab your guest’s attention. Great event design is just the way to do it. Sounds daunting, right? It doesn’t need to be. Here’s our guide on how to implement great design for your next event.

Set the mood with lighting

 

diner decoration with red lighting

A vital aspect in event design, lighting has the ability to completely transform the mood of an event or space. Effective light design will direct the audience’s attention to the right points in the room, and ensure the right tone is set throughout course of the event. Lighting can be particularly effective during announcements and speeches and can also add to a theme for a truly immersive experience. Experiment with spotlights, uplighters and LED strip lights to influence the perceived space of your event venue- and don’t forget about how the natural light will enter the room too!

Transform the venue with stage design

 

White tree decoration in event room

A stage is a blank canvas, which can be brought to life with anything from lighting to stage sets and banners. Incorporating stage design into your planning process can take your event from an average corporate event to an extraordinary one. Make the stage come alive with dramatic lighting, create a striking event backdrop to enhance the theme, or incorporate digital stage banners to present multimedia in an engaging way.

Don’t forget about the details

 

Conference room with lights and images on the wall

Once the big decisions have been made, it’s important to not forget about the details that will really tie the event together and help to set the scene. There a number of elements to consider when it comes to event décor, from background materials to table arrangements and centrepieces. Although a big task, your guests will remember the finishing touches just as much as they do the more elaborate arrangements. Would you put on a play with no décor? So why would you design an event without it?

Create a bespoke menu

Food may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you first start planning your event, but creating a bespoke menu and a creative food concept is an excellent way of tying your theme together and giving your guests an unforgettable experience. Find a venue that can offer flexibility when it comes to the food- whether you need food that can be eaten whilst networking, menus that will complement your theme, or meals than can be served outside with ease.

Event Design at The Brewery

Here at The Brewery, we’ve acquired a reputation for fantastic event design, and have even picked up some awards along the way. We believe that as our client, you should be involved in every aspect of the process to bring your event plan to life. From establishing your requirements, goals and brand guidelines, our talented on-site graphic designers, set designers, floor planners and set builders will use their extensive knowledge of The Brewery to make your vision a reality, no matter how complex or simple.

Whether you want to create a jaw-dropping design, or just add a personal touch, our dedicated team can bring your idea to life, no matter what your budget. If you’d like to find out more about how our award-winning team can help you with your own bespoke event design, get in touch with us today.