It's said that summer starts when elder trees burst into flower and ends in late August when the berries are ripe. Delicate elderflowers explode in hedgerows and country lanes across the Quicke's estate, and we greedily gather them up, capturing a bit of summer's magic to last us through the winter.
We put it in our cheese and bring it out on our festive cheeseboards, along with some well-deserved bubbles from Camel Valley, as we celebrate the year's end.
A 'Quicke' History of Elder Lore
The elder is an ancient hedgerow plant, native to Britain and steeped in mystery and superstition. Legend has it that if you fall asleep under a tree in full bloom, you'll be carried off into the world of the fairies...
Famous for their use in champagnes, cordials and cooking, elderflowers are also thought to have medicinal properties, and every part of the plant – bark, leaves, flowers and berries – have been used in domestic medicine since the days of Hippocrates. A flower infusion is a good old-fashioned remedy for colds and sore throats, just what we need at this time of year.
If you can capture the sweet taste of elderflower - dry it, bottle it and preserve it - you can bring it out in the midst of winter, a much needed reminder of warm sunny days.
Black Elder, Ellhorn, Pipe tree, Bore Tree, Eller, Holler
Bob and Annie Lindo have been producing award-winning wines from their vines at Camel Valley since 1989, crafting fresh and fruity tipples from the slopes of their vinyard in Cornwall. They're firmly leading the way in the revival of English wines, with their ‘Darnibole’ vineyards recently being elevated to the highest level of Protected Designated Origin (PDO) - the first UK vineyard to be awarded this accolade.
Infused with hedgerow scents and a touch of honey, the flagship Camel Valley Cornwall Brut 2013 is bursting with bubbles and full of the taste of summer.
Elderflower Clothbound Cheese
A fresh creamy clothbound cheese with a flicker of real elderflower running through it, our Elderflower Clothbound Cheese is delicately scented, rich and buttery. Full of aromatic floral notes, it pairs perfectly with a full party spread of charcuterie and pickles, figs and nuts, ideal for festive feasting.