All set for Gin and Trout Fest

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Staff Writer

ORGANISERS of the first edition of the Gin & Trout Festival say all is now in place for the event.

Starting on Saturday and ending on Sunday at Thaba Bosiu Cultural Village, the festival will run under the theme “Spirit of the Kingdom”.

One of the organisers, Tšokolo Makeka, told the Weekender that they were happy with the preparations so far.

“This is the first festival if it’s kind although there have been others like the Lesotho Wine Festival and the Maletsunyane Braai Festival which promote tourism and lifestyle in Lesotho,” Makeka said.

“We believe the festival goers will make this event what it needs to be and own it.”

The gin and trout pairing may be somewhat a strange combination but Makeka has a perfect reason for naming the festival as such.

“Gin is a playful and diverse spirit that is attached to a different and alternative lifestyle unlike other spirits. One can be creative and mix it with a variety of herbs and fruits… so even Basotho can explore making their own gins which was part of our thinking.

“Gin has different flavours but it doesn’t lose its taste. You can have pineapple gin, blueberry gin and even moringa gin. It is not about it being better than other spirits but people can find a gin that suits their personality and taste.”

While most people view trout fish as an expensive delicacy, Makeka views it as a national dish that is readily available and can be prepared in a variety of ways.

“Trout is a national delicacy and we thought it was prudent that we showcase one of our finest exports and unlock its potential for Basotho through having it in a variety of ways.

“Trout is actually more popular than most people think. It is a healthy fish and it is grown locally. As an alternate and sustainable food source, we believe trout holds lots of potential for Basotho. The French have their snails. Let us have our trout and celebrate it.”

Makeka warned fun lovers not to over-imbibe in gin without mixing it. He said drinkers should take gin moderately and mix it with their favourite cordials. The beauty of gin lies in the mixer and the garnish while the thrust is on the taste instead of the quantity hence drinkers must enjoy responsibly.

The festival will have a market set-up where the organisers are expecting people to support the various business that will run stalls. The stalls are expected to sell an array of goods among them trout, arts and craft and music.

Makeka said the festival would have a family friendly environment hence revellers should not worry about leaving their young children at home.

“We are also proud to have American house DJ Alton Miller joining us on Sunday along with some of the best emerging music talent in Lesotho to entertain the revellers.

“Apart from the kids’ zone, we also have an adult game zone where festival goers can pay to play gin-based games such as morabaraba gin, gin roulette or gin pong.”

He said camping space will also be available for revellers who prefer camping for the night and mix with party lovers.

“There will be no tickets at the gate but they will be available until late in each day at PinsNStripes bar or on +266 5888 7815. That is for control and security. Also no cooler boxes are allowed from outside. We will have speed points inside the venue for purchase but we encourage you to have cash on you to support the different attractions we have in the festival,” Makeka said.

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