You can’t move in the hipper bars in town without tripping over someone spouting about the rich and diverse flavours that the botanicals are bringing to their gin. Yes gin; the drink that in the 18th century was called ‘mother’s ruin’ because it was so cheap that its effect on family life was disastrous.

Secret recipes

These days gin has become the drink of choice for beard-toting hipsters, city slickers and discerning drinkers alike. This is partly because today’s production techniques are so sophisticated that distilleries can take advantage of the ability technology offers them to tweak the recipe and create something truly individual, from what is basically a vodka based drink. And to do this they add their own unique blends of ‘botanicals’ – plant extracts that add spice, warmth, citrus, ginger or floral flavours to the mix.

Plant extracts

While we don’t make gin here at Lyme Bay Winery, we do use plant extracts in many of our award-winning drinks, such as our Birch, Rosehip, Elderflower and Cowslip wines. Delicious and old-fashioned, these are all either dry or off-dry, making them the ideal accompaniment served chilled as an aperitif or with seafood dishes, chicken and salads.

And at this time of year our Nettle Wine is another great example of how we use natural ingredients in what we make. The best time for nettle picking is early/mid spring, so we send our team of pickers out to de-stem the young nettles and collect the leaves in large containers. These leaves are then soaked for 6-8 weeks on a white wine base, racked, filtered, delicately balanced and finally bottled to make our Lyme Bay Winery Nettle Wine, with the summery character of nettle and hints of melon and grapefruit.

stripping nettles


Grasp the nettle

If you’d like to grasp the nettle and try some of our award-winning fruit wines then you can always place an order with our friendly team here at the Winery via email at [email protected] or by calling us on 01297 551355, or pop in if you are passing.