From Garden Field & Forest to Bottle & Glass: The Recipes

by Anistatia Miller & Jared Brown

Our 2014 Tales of the Cocktail session From Garden, Field & Forest to Bottle & Glass brought together not only our story of our journey from urban foodies to country smallholders. We presented a number of techniques and recipes that go beyond your usual notions of infusions, liqueurs, and the drinks that can be made with them.

Here are the recipes from that presentation:

Fruit Butter

1.8 kilos berries
1.7 litres water
Bring berries & water to a boil. Lower and simmer until fruit is soft. Push fruit through a fine sieve and weigh the sauce.
For every 450 gr of sauce, measure 250 gr sugar. Set aside.
Return to the pan and reduce by 1/3.
Add sugar and simmer until dissolved and thick.
Store in sterile, sealed jars.

Blackcurrant G&T

1 barspoon blackcurrant butter
30 ml fresh lemon juice
30 ml Sipsmith London Dry Gin
120 ml Fevertree Tonic

Cocktail Cherries

Wash and pit 1 kilo Morello or Griot cherries. In a pot, combine 200 gr caster sugar, 250 ml water, 4 tsp lemon juice, 1 cinnamon stick, 2 tsp vanilla extract, and a healthy pinch of grated nutmeg. Bring to a boil and then lower heat to medium. Add cherries and simmer for 7 minutes. Remove from heat and add 500 ml Luxardo maraschino liqueur. Cool. Place cherries in Kilner jars and pour liquid near to the top. Pour a thin layer of gin or vodka on top, seal. We put our sealed jars in a hot water bath for about 10 minutes to ensure a secure seal. 

Fruit Shrub

500 gr fresh berries
480 ml distilled vinegar
Place berries and vinegar in a saucepan. Bring to a boil and simmer for 2 minutes to soften the fruit.
Push through a fine sieve. Return to the pot.
Add 250 gr caster sugar (or more to taste).
Bring to a boil and simmer for 2 minutes.
Cool and store in sterile bottles.

Raspberry Shrub Collins

30 ml raspberry shrub
50 ml Sipsmith London Dry Gin
120 ml sparkling water

Shiso Syrup

500 gr fresh red shiso leaves, washed, drained, salted, washed and drained again
375 gr caster sugar
125 ml runny honey
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
900 ml water
Heat water to a boil in a large saucepan.Add the leaves and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Remove the leaves and add sugar, honey, and juice. Strain through a jelly bag to remove any sediment. Bottle in sterile stopper bottles. 
The syrup will keep for 2-3 days in the fridge and up to a year in the freezer.

Shiso Cocktail

3 parts Sipsmith London Dry Gin
1 part red shiso syrup
Garnish with a green shiso leaf

Mors Cocktail

2 parts berries (blackcurrants, blackcurrants and cranberries, just cranberries)
3 parts water
sugar and lemon juice to taste
Bring berries & water to a boil and cook for 5 minutes.
Pass through chinois and return to pan.
Add sugar and juice. Simmer to dissolve. Bottle and refrigerate.
Serve like a sangria with a shot of vodka.

Venison Smoked Gin

Put two bottles of good gin or vodka into the freezer the night before
Load the barbecue with natural lump charcoal
Soak 1-2 cups of cherrywood chips in water
When the coals are glowing, drain the chips and add half of them
Place the venison on the grill, plus a metal bowl of cold gin or vodka from the freezer
Cover. Close the top vents. Reduce the bottom vents to half to optimise smoke and reduce heat
Cook covered for 10 minutes, add more wood chips.
Cook covered for another 15 minutes until the meat is done.
Remove meat and bowl of spirits from the grill.

Roasted Rhubarb Elixir: Part 1

500 gr rhubarb cut into short lengths
160 gr caster sugar
2 vanilla pods, split
Cover with foil and seal tight.
Bake for 30 minutes at 400° F (200 ° C).
Remove and leave sealed for 10 minutes.

Roasted Rhubarb Elixir: Part 2

Roasted rhubarb (see previous recipe)
500 ml water
Simmer covered for 20 minutes.
When cooled, strain through a jelly bag.
Blend 1 part finished syrup with 1 part Sipsmith London dry gin or vodka 

Roasted Rhubarb Punch

40 ml Rhubarb Elixir
40 ml Belvedere Vodka
120 ml sparkling water

Drying Herbs

Harvest plants begin to flower. Only the best leaves.
Preheat oven to 140°F (60°C) 
De-stem and place leaves in a single layer on a baking tray.
Place in the oven and prop the door open slightly.
Bake for 30 minutes. Check and toss the leaves around. Repeat until completely dry (2-4 hours).

Bullace Gin Liqueur

750 gr fresh bullaces, split and pitted (or frozen and kept whole)
1 tsp ground allspice
200 gr caster sugar
750 ml British dry white wine (try a Sharpham Barrel or Three Choirs dry white wine)
500 ml Sipsmith Gin

Bring to a boil the plums, allspice, sugar, and wine in a large saucepan. Remove from the hear and add the gin. Strain through a jelly bag, gently pressing any whole fruit against the cloth.
Pour into airtight containers and rest for 24 hours to allow the sediment to settle. Test the mixture for its pectin level and sweetness. (Bullaces have a very high pectin content and acidity.) Reheat the mixture and adjust with additional sugar and gin if necessary.
Bottle in sterile stopper bottles and age for at least a month.

As the harvest continues out here in the Cotswolds, we will be posting more recipes, tips, and tricks to making the most out of fresh, local produce in your bar repertoire.



  1. I really enjoyed your presentation at Tales of the Cocktail. I am really excited about making my own shrub!

  2. I was so inspired by you presentation, and promptly put some of my new konwledge to work:


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