Red Flag Sloe Gin   2 comments

drunken-bunny-red-flag-small

There was no sloe gin in 2015 due to me dropping the ball as regards getting out to pick the berries in 2014 after the very good batch of Two Cures (from which we sampled for Quality Control purposes throughout the infusion year starting with the initial mixing).  To be fair, I tried after the first cold snap of 2014 but every blackthorn I could find had been stripped bare by less patient practitioners (there had been a Radio 4 programme in which sloe gin featured that year).  The year before that (2013), it was time for the Monstrous Erection; 2012 found us drinking from the Devil’s Punchbowl (part of the Step-by-Step process write-ups with the final, delicious step linked here).

Like 2014, last year had a really late first frost…nearly New Year’s Eve.  So, I harvested the Monday after Socialism 2015 at the edge of the A420 on the 66 bus route I was still shackled to when we lived in Swindon (the year before must’ve been a fluke).  I put the berries in a deep freeze at -80°C for 8 hours to simulate a hard frost (in Siberia).  Jeremy Corbin had only recently been made leader of the Labour Party and I mocked up the label’s main theme then in honour of him and Billy Bragg singing a rousing version of The Red Flag.

One year to the week later, and it is filtered and decanted.  And, delicious.

The people’s gin is deepest red
It’s lifted to our martyred dead.
And, though we pour it stiff and cold
It warms the throats of young and old.

Then raise the scarlet liquor high;
And, at its pleasure live and die.
Though cowards flinch, teetotalers sneer,
We’ll keep the Red Flag pouring here.

–The Red Flag, sort of.

red-flag-sloe-gin-decanted

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