EDP Norfolk - - Food And Drink - www.thenor­folk­sloe­com­ Pa­trick and Sarah’s favourite cock­tail

The Norfolk Sloe Com­pany was set up near Fak­en­ham in 2011 by hus­band and wife team Pa­trick and Sarah Saun­ders fol­low­ing a bumper har­vest of their sloes.

Ev­ery year, the cou­ple and their chil­dren made sloe gin for friends and fam­ily, but sud­denly what was an an­nual tra­di­tion be­came a po­ten­tial busi­ness idea, such was the vol­ume.

Their first gin – Black Shuck Sloe Gin – achieved a pres­ti­gious Great Taste Three Star award – so they be­gan de­vel­op­ing their own Norfolk-in­spired premium gin.

“In De­cem­ber 2015 af­ter two years of recipe de­vel­op­ment and taste tri­als, in­volv­ing gin loving friends and fam­ily, our dream be­came a re­al­ity and the first 1,000 bot­tles of Black Shuck Gin were sold within just four weeks. It al­ways gives us a thrill to see it on the shelves and hear­ing cus­tomers rave about the taste.”

The gins are very much in­spired by the land­scape around them and the cou­ple have drawn on the county’s his­tory to cre­ate a brand with strong lo­cal con­nec­tions.

“Its silky char­ac­ter echoes the sweep­ing beaches, me­an­der­ing in­land wa­ter­ways and easy-go­ing life­style. While its fresh lilac tones are rem­i­nis­cent of the big skies the con­trast­ing vi­brant bursts of fiery orange re­flect Norfolk’s time­less nat­u­ral beauty,” she said.

“For those who don’t know, the le­gend of Black Shuck is syn­ony­mous with the Norfolk coast and is one with which we have grown up. Us­ing the strapline Black Shuck Gin, Norfolk’s Leg­endary Spirit, seemed fit­ting.”

The com­pany is very much a fam­ily con­cern, with ev­ery­one con­tribut­ing dif­fer­ent skills.

“Busi­ness meet­ings tend to be held over a big Sun­day lunch with ev­ery­one con­tribut­ing ideas and opin­ions. The Black Shuck im­age used on all of our prod­ucts was de­signed by our daugh­ter Leanne. When it comes to bot­tling and la­belling it’s all hands on deck. With plenty of ban­ter be­ing ex­changed and with an eclec­tic mix of mu­sic play­ing even the la­bo­ri­ous tasks be­come en­joy­able,” said Sarah.

Fam­ily and friends of Pa­trick and Sarah Saun­ders taste test some new gin flavours

Pa­trick and Sarah Saun­ders from the Norfolk Sloe Com­pany

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