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Ex-teachers, Lorraine and ‘Digger’ Digweed, started making fruit wines from their Hereford home as a hobby. As luck would have it, the manager of a wine shop moved in next door, and after sampling the wines, encouraged the couple to bottle their drink to sell. Monkhide Country Wines (now simply known as Monkhide) was born in the year 2000 and in 2002 the company started making fruit liqueurs as well.
Family and friends all help to produce the liqueurs, which are all made naturally using local fruit where possible. The couple grow their own apples and pears, friends help to collect sloes from the hedgerows, Lorrain’s parents grow the damsons, and the honey for the mead comes from her father’s bees. The liqueurs are made in small batches and seven out of the 11 different flavours that are made have won Great Taste Awards.
The citrus vodkas, such as Lime Vodka, are best kept in the freezer and served on their own over crushed ice, or used as mixers with tonic or lemonade. Alternatively, try it drizzled over a fruit cheesecake to give it an adult kick! The Apple Brandy and Pear Brandy are relaxing after-dinner drinks, best served with coffee, or added to hot chocolate, while the Sloe Gin is a hip flask favourite.
For more information visit www.monkhidewines.co.uk