As promised, the long-awaited conclusion to my time in beautiful Plymouth, England.

Our morning began at the water source for all of Plymouth — and by relation, Plymouth gin. It’s called the River Meavy, and it is really lovely.

On a little branch of the river, we had our morning tea and master distiller Sean Harrison led us in two awesome activities. First, he made us a Pink Gin using Plymouth, water straight from the r, and Angostura bitters. It’s one of the simplest gin cocktails in the history of gin cocktails, as discussed in a past CPCC.

Next, he invited us to do something no prior English Gins trip had ever done before: race rubber ducks down the River Meavy. It was pretty great — even greater once we learned that it was Sean’s idea. Always thinking strategically, I selected the duck that masqueraded as a dolphin, presuming it would have excellent swimming skills.

So, the ducks were released, and we all stood by on the sidelines of the River Meavy, cheering them on like proud parents.

In the end, my duck didn’t win (I think it came in fourth after a couple dangerous rolls in the tide), but that’s ok.

Thereafter, we bid adieu to Plymouth and boarded the train back to London. I must say, of all the train rides I’ve taken — and I adore train rides because they are always so picturesque —  that sea-side journey between London and Plymouth is one of the prettiest ever. One of my fellow passengers who’s taken it many times said that in rough weather, it’s not uncommon for the waves from the English Channel to crash over the rocks and completely cover the train. How dramatic!

Back in England, we all checked into The Zetter Hotel & Townhouse for our final evening together, which was spent at the Zetter’s delicious house restaurant, Bistro Bruno Loubet. I had the pleasure of sitting near Larry the Travel Writer and Jennifer Pelka, whom I love. She’s the managing editor of Gilt Taste and was quite helpful in translating some of the more obscure French dishes.

Thereafter, we had one last round of drinks at The Zetter Townhouse, which was lovely. We were all as impressed with the cocktails as we were with the decor.

The Zetter Townhouse’s fancy stairwell covered in newspaper clippings.

Most of my English Gins companions had early flights and turned in on the early side, but a handful of us stayed out bar-hopping into the wee hours. After all, I had two more days in London for a little vacation — lucky me! Not that I needed a vacation after the English Gins trip. Though quite thoroughly packed, itinerary-wise, I have to say it’s one of the best trips I’ve ever been fortunate enough to experience.