The English Spirit Guide to Valentine's Day
Updated: Feb 21
Like a lot of our annual traditional events, Valentine’s Day has gone a bit, well over the top when it comes to having to show the one you love how much you love them by the size or price of the gift.
However, we should all pat ourselves on the backs for being far more civilised than in Roman times when it’s thought this Day of Love began. There were some fairly dark rituals that whilst researching for this article I did gloss over, and I much preferred the parts about Shakespeare writing notes about love. I also found out that Hallmark Cards started the printing of commercial Valentine’s Day cards just over 100 years ago.
So where are we now? There are the cynics that moan about the commercial exploitation of it all but then there’s the joy that will be brought when people may be proposed to or simply asked out for that first drink. I’m especially touched by the fact that my eight year old boy has been preparing a card and gift for me as his take on Valentines Day is simply give something nice to someone you love and I’m going to enjoy that sentiment whilst I still can!
Love it or loathe it, a large percentage of us will be succumbing to the need to do ‘something’ and the majority will revert to two of the greatest loves; Eating and Drinking. If you’re rebelling against coupledom and getting together with friends then again that will probably involve some food and drinks. As always English Spirit is here with a selection of our stunning spirits and liqueurs to either buy as a gift or enjoy together.
Creamy, velvety and extremely chocolatey, this luxurious liqueur has just a hint of chilli on the palate to bring some grown up warmth to your sip. Ideal sipped neat after dinner, served long with ice and cream soda, or drizzled liberally over just about any dessert you can think of.
A brand new rum experiment from our Master Distiller Dr John: totally unique and not found anywhere else. Fresh strawberries are pressed and their goodness combined with one of our gorgeous triple distilled rums. Nothing artificial here and it shows: luscious strawberry jam notes entwine with molasses golden rum in a deliciously smooth liqueur. Chill and serve neat, or try combining with your favourite mixer.
Forget everything you know about sambuca. If you don’t like sambuca but you like aniseed then this will totally reset your view of the notorious resident of the late night back bar: and if you do like sambuca then boy are you going to enjoy ours. Our scratch distilled elderberry eau de vie, redistilled with star anise and a lick of English sugar. Lush layers of silky smooth aniseed: great for sipping neat before or after a romantic meal.
A London Dry Gin so good that our distiller put his name on it. Distilled from our signature sugar beet vodka, which means superior smoothness. Only four botanicals used: juniper, coriander, citrus zests and macadamia nut. If you were a chef you wouldn’t use 15 different herbs and spices in your cooking: you’d use a small selection that balance perfectly. Our gin is no different. You can taste each botanical in each mouth watering sip. Great with slimline tonic, or to really get the full flavours and appreciate the high quality of the spirit, try this cocktail serve from Dr John.
"Dr J' Martini: pour two measures of ice cold Dr J’s Gin into a chilled martini glass. Add a freshly torn bay leaf and forget about the vermouth. Sensational."