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Review

Raisthorpe Manor
Damson Gin

Distillery

Julia & David Medforth of Raisthorpe Manor Fine Foods Ltd., Wharram, Malton, North Yorkshire, England, UK.

Website

Raisthorpe Manor.

History

Julia and David Medforth already had an established business (one of the biggest in the UK) of running flyers (both simulated shooting parties with real shotguns and actual shooting parties with live birds) on their 1,500-acre estate, which of course includes drinks afterwards. They started experimenting with the production of their very own Raspberry Gin Liqueur from a family recipe, which led to the birth of Raisthorpe Manor Fine Foods. This allied business was established in 2008 and has seen a steady growth of products including further spirits and liqueurs and other items including chocolates, preserves etc. Initially started from their kitchen this is now carried out in a separate production facility.

Point of interest: The “Three Trees” series of paintings by Yorkshire born artist David Hockney were undertaken on Raisthorpe Manor estate. At this particular spot blackthorn bushes grow beneath the “three trees” in question and today are harvested for sloes to produce Raisthorpe Manor’s own works of art: their sloeberry-based products.

Production

They use the finest locally sourced ingredients, where possible, making all natural products from traditional and family recipes. In keeping with their ethical approach of using local supplies, a team of employees from the surrounding area carry out all the activities of the business from harvesting to bottling and sales. This includes the harvesting of Damsons from the Yorkshire Wolds, which are steeped in an undisclosed London Dry Gin with some sugar, and left to mature for a minimum of eight months. The resulting deep red colored Gin is presented in clear squat rectangular (almost square) bottle with a large black colored, “R” shaped label.

Category

Flavored Gin - Damson.

Alcohol By Volume (ABV)

22% (44 Proof).

Price Range

$$$$. Not available in the USA however Raisthorpe Manor will ship direct, subject to local restrictions. We are unclear of the additional costs involved but contact them direct and they will supply a quote.

Botanicals

Unknown but includes damsons and juniper berries.

Name

Named after the country estate where it is made and the key botanical flavoring used.

Tasting Notes

On the nose is fruity plum. On the smooth velvety palate is a semi-sweet deep red fruitiness from the plum like damsons. On the close is a dry, gently warming and slightly tart finish. A clear classically styled Gin liqueur.

This is less dry and a little sweeter than most, with good quality, showing the handcrafted care that has gone into its production. For the average liqueur drinker this certainly hits the mark, for us (who like a dryer and less sweet offering) it didn’t leave us with any lasting impression (e.g. it would have been nice to find some of the Gin characteristics coming through) to help it stand out in a crowd.

We have only sampled a small amount of this drink so are unable to identify suitable mixed drinks combinations. However, given its semi-sweet fruitiness it makes a fine pairing taken neat with dessert, fruit or cheese dishes where its smoothness shines best. 

Awards & Accolades

2 Gold Stars, Great Taste Awards, 2011.



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