A Pleasant Surprise…
Some of you may remember my failed attempt to collect enough blackberries to make my blackberry gin this year. Instead I ended up bulking up the fruit content with some apples from the fruit bowl and a punnet of raspberries from the freezer. I must confess, I didn’t entertain much hope of the end product being very nice. However, I’m pleased to say that as I decanted the gin into bottles this weekend and took the opportunity to sample some, I was pleasantly surprised. Although not as intensely fruity as my usual blackberry gin, my ‘Desperate Measures’ gin is rather nice. It’s much lighter and fresher tasting than the blackberry gin and, although it has a very slight bitter aftertaste, I’m fairly confident that this will mellow as the gin matures over the next year or so.
I think any fruit gin improves with age. I recently found a dusty bottle of sloe gin in the larder which I recall was not terribly nice after it’s first year of maturing. However, since being forgotten about for a couple more years, it now tastes delicious – some of the best sloe gin I’ve tasted and definitely something to warm the cockles as the nights draw in. Many recipes I’ve seen for sloe or blackberry gin (including my own) recommend leaving for at least a year to mature but if you can wait even longer, I think your patience will be amply rewarded.