Sloe Gin and the Dunwich Horror

By | June 2, 2008

My recent cycling trip to the coast was cold, wet and rather grim. Rather like cycling along the Loire. We made it to Dunwich in the rain. ‘Mr Cope’ explains the gory details on his blog.
I was kept going through it all by the promise of a sloe gin tasting. Our hostess Jo had four, count ’em, four jars of sloe gin developing nicely in the pantry. We were called upon to taste them all and report on the best recipe.
We warmed up with an aged example bottled in 2006. It looked dark with plenty of sediment mixed in, making the texture almost lumpy. It smelled rich and almondy it tasted of fresh ground almonds and was just the right level of sweetness. It had certainly benefited from it’s rest in the dark.
The rest were tasted ‘blind’. Example 1 was my favourite, it had a curious balance of almonds and bubble gum. I’m not a big bubble gum eater but this was pure Bazooka Joe.
Example 2 was totally different. Far fruitier with no nut character. It tasted of cranberries, it could have made an excellent base for a Cosmopolitan. It tasted much sweeter. I think I’d like it better as a mixed drink.
Example 3 sat somewhere in the middle, with blackberries and a mild almond flavour.
The great unveiling revealed that “Auntie Mo” had created the ideal recipe, beating off magazine and cook book efforts. Let’s hear it for Auntie Mo!
The chocolates on the side are my attempt to make Cherry Ripe bites. It seems that Cherry Ripe is one of Australia’s finest chocolate bars but is not available here in the UK. As far as I can tell it falls somewhere between being a Ruffle Bar (ughh) and a Cabana Bar (why-o-why did they take it off the market).