clickie: (Default)
[personal profile] clickie
I have been obsessed with sloe gin (in concept) for a pretty long while, because it's gin! flavored with a plum-like fruit! that tastes slightly almondy! These are all things I love! However, I have not been able to find the real thing in the US: up until now, the only kind in America has been crappy De Kuyper stuff, which to me doesn't seem to be worth consuming. Sloe gin seems to still be made in England, but all my attempts to get friends going to England to bring me back some seem to have failed.

Finally, I read in the New York Times that Plymouth started exporting a limited quantity of the Real Thing to the U.S.! I immediately found a store online that was going to ship it domestically, and placed my order. It took forever for them to fill the order; probably because of slowness on the part of the exporter, not on the part of the store, because when they did finally ship it, they actually called me to tell me about it, which I thought was quite friendly.

It arrived yesterday, but was all warm from sitting on the porch in the sun, so I put it aside for the time being. I told some friends about it in the lab today, and one of them, a former bartender, was all, oh, sloe gin is not very good. I was hoping (and she could not refute) that she was referring to the nasty fake stuff, but it did make me anxious to try my hard-won Plymouth. So I had some today for the first time. I had it on the rocks with soda, and it was as delicious as I hoped it would be! Yay. It is plummy, with a hint of bitterness and a hint of almond. After I post this, I will probably have another, my third of the evening.

I know, this is not a particularly exciting anecdote. However, it is the story of a small dream fulfilled, so you'll just have to be happy for me and deal.

Date: 2008-08-07 05:16 am (UTC)
zyrya: (Rose - yellow multi)
From: [personal profile] zyrya
I always wondered what it tasted like. I thought it would be bitter, because sloes are bitter, but maybe the English have refined, polite tasting sloes that waft languidly through a Merchant-Ivory country estate.

Date: 2008-08-07 06:40 am (UTC)
zyrya: (Sweetpea - dark pink)
From: [personal profile] zyrya
Thus my confusion! Sloes are notoriously bitter ... in the Olden Days sloes were squeezed onto childen's fingers to deter nail biting and thumb sucking. Sloes aren't Merchant/Ivory extras, they're Dickensian street thugs.

All hail the gin.

Date: 2008-08-07 12:06 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Sloe Gin Fizzes were a drink of choice for me in college! (Though undoubtedly made with the crappy sloe gin)

Date: 2008-08-07 06:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Me too! And more recently I was all sad when I bought a bottle of sloe gin and realized how icky it was. I'm so inspired by Daisie's tales of actual pleasant-tasting sloe gin.

Date: 2008-08-07 01:30 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Here is sloe liqueur ( from my favorite store in Scotland. It was made at Moniack Castle, which makes many fine booze items but is a mangy, flea-bitten excuse for a castle.

I have had the crappy kind in a sloe-gin fizz, and I thought it was vile. I'm glad to know there's better stuff out there.

(Andrea, in college I used to drink Boone's Farm and Southern Comfort sours, so I'm not ragging on you.)

Date: 2008-08-07 01:51 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I have made my peace with being a froofy girly drink kind of girl.

Date: 2008-08-07 06:04 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
This reminds me of the time I was buying for my underage sister and her friends, and one friend had given her a $10 bill with the instructions "Get me as much Boone's Farm Strawberry Hill and Mickey's as this will buy." Ugh, that must have made for a rough night.


Date: 2008-08-07 01:42 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
It's still hot in the summer? That must be nice.

Boston is covered with a rainy, damp layer of depression occasionally interrupted with heat waves so humid you can't enjoy them. Booze helps.

Date: 2008-08-07 01:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Now I'm all curious about it. Sounds like something that could be seriously awful, or very nice. (Okay, that's true of almost all hard liquor, but seems more true of things like sloe gin, absinthe, that Croation stuff...)

Date: 2008-08-07 01:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oh, now I see that sloe is blackthorn. Heh. I just killed one of those in my yard. Maybe I'll let the next one go and see about making liquor out of it. Mmmmm.... not. The almond flavor is most likely cyanide from the seeds, typical of the Rosaceae. Some is okay, but I don't know how much some is.

Date: 2008-08-07 04:22 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oooh, that does sound tasty! It also makes me curious to experiment; I do not have any sloe fruit, but my house currently has way too many plums and we've been experimenting with hommade fruit liqueurs. Hmmmm...

Date: 2008-08-07 05:38 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
They say that freezing takes some of the bitterness out of the sloes. Supposedly, after the first frosts, sloes are almost edible... If there hasn't been a frost by the time one picks the sloes for gin, one is supposed to put them in the freezer overnight.

I have threatened to make sloe gin some years and never done it. This year I will, if there are plenty of sloes. Last year the bushes were black with them.

Date: 2008-08-07 06:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Alas, i only have the crappy sloe gin on hand. What are your feelings on sweet wines? I've got a bottle of yummy Hungarian sweet wine that is mellow and apricoty and drinks like a liqueur, but since it's a wine you need to drink it up fairly quickly so I don't want to open it unless I have partners in crime...

Date: 2008-08-07 06:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I know you're not asking me, but I am CRAZY about crappy Hungarian delicious sweet wine.

Date: 2008-08-07 10:26 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Not crappy though - the stuff I have is very nice, hand carried from Hungary for my consumption.

Date: 2008-08-08 08:58 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
tokaji nom nom nom nom sip sip sip
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