Hebridean Spirit

                                                                                                                                                                                 
 

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Hebridean Liqueurs are a small niche blender based in Argyllshire on the West Coast of Scotland. Here we chose the finest of distilled spirits Malt Whisky, Caribbean Rum and French Brandy to blend our unique and individual Liqueurs.

Our unique liqueurs can be found in Surrey and Sussex at various events and food fairs through both counties, listings of these can be found on our events page.
 
Our unique liqueurs are also available through the following establishments:

Arundel Castle
Arundel
West Sussex

Ashdown Park Hotel
Wych Cross
East Grinstead
East Sussex

Chapter 12 Wine Bar
Hailsham
East Sussex

Mad Crush Wine Bar
Brighton
East Sussex

New Street Butchers & Deli
99 New Street
Horsham
West Sussex

Grayshott Wine Centre
28A Headley Road
Grayshott
Surrey
GU26 6LD


The word ‘whisky’ comes from a corruption of the Gaelic usige beatha, meaning ‘water of life’. Gradually over time the word usige became usky and eventually ‘whisky’. The earliest recording of Scotland's national drink appears in the Exchequer Rolls in 1494 which states that Friar John Cor, a Tironensian monk of Lindores Abbey, paid duty on 8 bolls of malt in order to make Aqua Vitae for King James VI.
 
The word liqueur comes from the Latin word “liquifacere” which means “to dissolve or melt.” Liqueurs are generally alcoholic beverages made of almost neutral spirits, flavoured with herbs, fruits, spices, nuts, cream or other materials, and usually sweetened. There is some evidence to show that the art of distilling could have been brought to Scotland by early Christian missionary monks but it is thought that Highland farmers were already distilling spirits from their surplus barley. These regional distillations were at times unpalatable and very strong and in order to make them palatable they would be sweetened and flavoured.
As the trade routes opened, the variety of spices and other ingredients, such as sugar cane, orange and caramel, made their way into liqueurs and many households had there own distillery and recipes. Some were used for their aesthetic qualities and used by women during childbirth while others were imbibed as a digestive aid. The original 'Usige Beatha', " Water of Life"
Distilling had been practiced in Scotland for hundreds of years undeterred until 1707 when the Scottish and English parliaments amalgamated to form the Treaty of Union and subsequently banned illicit distilling a few decades later. The role of regulating the illicit distillers was given to excise men or gaugers as they were known. The job of the gauger was to confiscate distilling equipment and any whisky from the illicit distillers; this in turn made many distillers relocate to the highlands where the terrain was harsher and where being spotted was harder.
Legal distilling was finally made attractive to many illicit distillers in 1823 when a new act was passed in Parliament meaning that if distillers took out a distilling licence they would be given help from the government and lower tax duties. One George Smith of Glenlivet was one of the first distillers to take advantage, although it did not go down well with his illicit distilling neighbours and many threatened to burn down his distillery!

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