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Diploma in Gin

Course Itinerary


The West Gate entrance at the Botanics opens at 10am.  Candidates are welcome at the Cottage thereafter for a tea or coffee.  The Diploma will start at 10.30.

Please ask reception for directions to the Cottage or follow the signs.


After a short revision session on the pre-course reading modules, we look at distillation, the different methods and new innovations.

Guest Distiller

This is followed by the guest distillers slot (previous distillers include: Tom Nichol (Tanquerary 10), Jamie Baxter (Burleighs and other Gins), Ray Clynick (Orogin), James Porteous (Electric Gin) and Simon Buley (Caorunn Gin).


After lunch, candidates will be taken on a tour of the different botanicals in the gardens by Dr Greg or one of his team.  Candidates will learn about the different uses of botanicals as well as experiencing them in their 'live' state.

Once back in the classroom, Greg will hand-pick a few plants and go over them individually in more detail so candidates can further familiarise themselves with the workings of botanicals.

Sensory & Gin Tasting

Candidates will be taken through a gin tasting in the form of a blind tasting.  The 4 different styles of gin provide the perfect opportunity for candidates to try and identify some of the botanicals they will have just learnt about.  A spider chart is created for each different gin making comparison of the different styles very easy.  Guidance is given for those who conduct gin tastings on a personal or professional level.


There is a short formal assessment at the end of the day.  Candidates must achieve 60% or more in each of the 4 modules tested, in order to gain the Certificate.

Venue: The Royal Botanic Gardens

The Royal Botanic Gardens is a world-renowned scientific centre for the study of plants, their diversity and conservation. It provides the perfect setting for our Diploma in Gin. The Diploma takes place in the recently re-erected Botanic Cottage, which is located in the centre of the Botanical Herb Garden.

  • Diploma in Gin Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh

This one day comprehensive course covers all aspects of gin from the history and regulatory styles, different distillation methods, botanicals for gin and of course gin cocktails.

The course is taught by gin guru, Geraldine Coates and each Diploma features a guest distillers slot, where candidates learn from the distillers themselves about how their gin differs either through unusual techniques adopted or distinctive gin botanicals used.

The gin botanicals section has been devised by Dr Greg Kenicer and the Edinburgh Whisky Academy, to offer candidates an immersive insight into botanicals and their different influences with respect to gin. Dr Greg or one of his team take candidates on an interactive walk through the vast array of different botanicals, please remember to bring your umbrella – there is a reason that Scotland is so green!

After the walk, Greg talks in more detail about the botanical structure of a few key plants, allowing candidates to fully immerse themselves in the wonderful world of flavour components for gin.  Candidates will also learn how to conduct a gin tasting when they are taken through a blind tasting by Geraldine.  Geraldine pioneered gin tastings over 20 years ago and has since hosted countless tastings on both a professional and consumer-level.  Her wealth of experience brings a unique offering.

  • Course Overview

  • Course Length: 1 day
  • Preparatory Reading: 2 hours
  • Who is it aimed at? Brand ambassadors, gin professionals, hospitality professionals, spirits retailers, gin enthusiasts, gin writers and bloggers, gin distillery guides
  • Venue: Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh
  • Price: £280.00
  • Modules Included

  • History of Gin
  • Gin Definitions & Styles
  • Gin Now
  • Distillation
  • Botanicals
  • Sensory
  • Cocktails

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need prior knowledge?

No, there is no prior knowledge required.  

Is food provided?

Yes, a lunch is provided and teas and coffees are available throughout the day.

Is there any preparatory work I need to do?

Yes, candidates need to read and understand the pre-course reading modules that will be emailed to them upon payment of the course. 

These modules are assessed so we advise approximately 2 hours study time for these modules.

How long is the assessment and does it cover everything?

The assessment is 45 minutes long and covers 4 modules:  The History of Gin, Definitions and Styles of Gin, Distillation and Sensory.  Candidates must achieve 60% in each module in order to achieve the Diploma

If I do not pass 1 of the modules do I need to retake the whole exam?

No, candidates only need to resit the modules where they did not achieve 60%.

Do I have to come to the Academy to retake the assessment?

No. Where possible we will use our network of invigilators to assist in invigilating a retake. On the odd occasion where this isn’t possible we can use the Prometric assessment centres although there will be an additional fee of €115 for use of the assessment centre.