By Gemma Standeven, Director, Damson Tree Vodka
The damson - related to the wild plum; small and oval in shape with a slight point at one end and a colour that is somewhere between indigo and black with delicate soft, smoky bloom.
A childhood, with my siblings, scurrying around the hills and orchards of our farm in Herefordshire meant an annual glut of the sweet, plum-like fruit. Using old recipes, we used them up in jams and puddings.
Visitors, though, were always particularly tickled by our famously good damson liqueur and so by popular demand I started increasing production in 2005. Now with both brothers on board, we continue to undertake the whole process by hand and steep the fruit for over a year to accomplish the award winning taste.
Damson vodka, rivals its close cousin sloe gin for rich, sweet, deliciousness. It is another perfectly weather-appropriate tipple that is delicious on its own, in cocktails, or accompanied by specific food pairings.
At Damson Tree, we steep fistfuls of foraged damsons from family owned orchards and hedgerows in Herefordshire, in distilled vodka with cane sugar. Naturally sweet, encouraging a deep fruity flavour in our vodka. The splash of colour on the fruit trees as the Partridge season begins, fuels our enthusiasm each year as we look forward to drams of the ruby-red liqueur.
Some little known Damson facts:
- Originally from Syria, the damson tree takes its name from the city of Damascus.
- Damson stones were found in a bag round the waist of a 4000 year-old ‘Ice Man’ uncovered recently in the Alps.
- In ancient Rome purple was the colour worn by the emperors. Damsons were used as dyes to create these royal robes.
- They were first brought to England by the Romans, and although they used to be found only in the wild among the hedgerows, they are now commercially grown and therefore more readily available to all.
- British colonists in turn took it to America.
Damnation is Damson Tree’s name for the cocktail of damson vodka mixed with bubbly! Damson Tree and the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust have had the pleasure of supporting each other at various events over the past year and we hope to continue to do so.
Click here for more information or please get in touch with Gemma on 0845 519 8326 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. There are currently discounts on shoot orders!!
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