The latest in my series of “drinks I’d rather like to try but can never seem to find” is Chambord, a raspberry liqueur produced in France to a 17th century recipe. I love raspberries anyway and I have to say I’m rather in love with the bottle. It’s made from both black and red raspberries, Madagascan vanilla, Moroccan citrus peel, honey and cognac. Apart from the honey, all things I like. I’m drooling already.
According to the Chambord website, the liqueur is based on a recipe dating back to the late 1600s and which was tasted by Louis XIV on one of his visits to the Loire Valley. Whole raspberries and blackberries are steeped in spirits for several weeks to create an infusion, a process that is repeated several times. After the last infusion is drawn off, the fruit is pressed to obtain the sugars and juices, and the infusion and pressing are combined together and mixed with the other ingredients. It’s all rather potent – 16.5% ABV, more than beer but less than gin – which is worth remembering as it sounds all a bit moreish.
The bottle itself is also rather distinctive, being almost completely spherical with a gold “belt” around the widest part and a coronet on the lid. As it’s used in a number of cocktails, I suppose a well-stocked cocktail bar would have Chambord – but it still seems to be quite hard to find. That may be just as well, as there’s a possibility I would just drink the lot.
POSTSCRIPT – Since originally drafting this post, I have now found Chambord in Waitrose and resisted the urge to buy it. Even the bottle looks moreish.