Resurrected from the embers of the past, sparked with imagination and stoked with an obsession for Scotland’s natural wild larder, each bottle of Aelder is testament to nature’s brilliance. A truly unique, sophisticated and contemporary elixir, Aelder excels in elevating many of Scotland’s forgotten ingredients back into the contemporary consciousness.

 

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Hand crafted in small batches from hedgerow to elixir, Aelder is deep, complex, fruity and decidedly moreish. The dark, rich fruit of the Elder is complimented by a host of wild Scottish botanicals and spices, and blended with Scottish whisky to fully enliven the flavour of the foraged berries. The end result is a liqueur that is rich, smooth and complex with a beautifully warming finish.

Created by Rupert Waites, head chef and chief forager at the Buck and Birch, Aelder was one of numerous wild flavour experiments developed in “The Shed”. Taking its debut at our very first dining experience in 2012 it proved an instant hit, with diners requesting bottles to take home.

 

Aelder is both distinctive and versatile. It can just as easily be enjoyed neat in front of a roaring fire as it can be sipped in a sparkling cocktail bathed in the summer sun. Drunk neat it is an easy sipper from a warm glass on a cold night. Try it in a kir style drink, topped up with prosecco for an indulgent twist or add to any cocktail where a dark fruit hit is needed. Or keep it true to its natural origins and pair with game. As elderberries are rich in antioxidants, it's even been said that a nip of Aelder before bedtime will keep colds at bay. One more reason to drink to health, happiness and the wondrous wild.

SERVING SUGGESTIONS

Aelder Royale

15ml Aelder topped up with Champagne or Prosecco for an indulgent aperitif

Wild Aelder Bramble

25ml Botanist Gin, 25ml Aelder Elixir, 10ml Seabuckthorn juice, 10ml Rosehip syrup, mixed over crushed ice

Aelder Toddy

100ml crab apple wine, 25ml Aelder Elixir, 10ml Seabuckthorn. Heat ingredients in a pan and serve hot

In an age when terms like “wild” and “foraged” are being overused by chefs and producers who barely step outside, Rupert and Tom at The Buck and Birch are a breath of fresh air. They are the real, wild deal - making time in busy lives to get genuinely intimate with the plants, fungi, game and seaweeds that make up Scotland’s true natural larder, and using that as a springboard for creativity. You can taste their dedication, commitment and knowledge in everything they make. - Mark Williams (leading Scottish foraging educator www.gallowaywildfoods.com)