Our Elderflower Rhubarb Sparkle has proven such a hit we keep having to expand our Rhubarb patch. The sheep haven't made much fuss about their paddock getting smaller but our customers keep asking for more. When they start bleating as much as our customers we will have to find a bigger field for them.
Cuisine Magazine recently judged the Elderflower Rhubarb Sparkle to be in the top 10 New Zealand Artisan Food and Beverage products declaring it "Deliciously refreshing with subtle effervescence and wonderful colour, one of the most interesting non-alcoholic drinks you could find".
We source everything as locally as possible. In the case of the Elderflower Blackcurrant Sparkle this means form over the road at Murray Steven's place.
A Selwyn district local for 4 generations Murray grows arguably of the best Blackcurrants in New Zealand. New Zealand grows some of the best Blackcurrants in the world so he's a talented man that Murray.
The Elderflower goes really well with all dark fruits. That's because the Elderflower has a honeydew sweet flavor that balances tart fruit sourness like nothing else. The health benefits of these two natural ingredients combine to make a drink that is sure to keep the wolf from the door through the winter months.
The Elderflower Original Sparkle is a brilliantly refreshing drink, lightly sparkling with notes of Lychee, Honeydew and Gooseberry.
So brilliant is the Elderflower that to this day the folk from the Isle of Man believe the bushes are inhabited by pixies they call the Vonnie Vegg.
You don't want to mess with these little jokers, sure they bring you good luck if you are nice to them, but ignore them at your peril. Hence it is still illegal to chop an Elderberry bush down and common courtesy to tip your hat when passing one by!
Our pickers are sure to stay on the Vonnie Vegg's good side by kindly thanking each they pick from.
Our Ginger and Honey Cordial with Lemon is a real must for winter. It arouses the senses and leaves a gentle tingling in the throat.
At Aroha we source everything as locally as possible because we believe that the quality and flavor is better; our honey is produced by the bees which pollinate elderflower on the Canterbury Plains and our lemons are bought from the local market and juiced by hand.
Our ginger is the exception. Anyone who has enjoyed a Thai curry will appreciate that the Thai know a thing or two about ginger. We feel that the tastiest ginger comes from Thailand and so we get it from them.
However if you live close by and can produce something just as tasty, send us a sample and we’ll give it a taste.
Elderflower is the pioneer of the cordial family. It was the first of the Aroha team to arrive back in 2007 and is used as the base for the Elderflower Sparkle range.
Each November, pickers return from all corners of the globe to help the harvest. The elderflower is sourced from the wild, on the plains of Canterbury. They bloom beneath the mighty Southern Alps with the warm rays of Spring. The blossom collected each day is steeped for 24 hours giving over all its goodness to the syrup. For one intense month, pickers pick the most perfect blooms. When the season of elderflower blossom ends we all celebrate with an Aroha Harvest Festival and copious amounts of elderflower cider. Which is drunk with reverence and in moderation.
Elderflower has a floral scent and its taste hints of honeydew, gooseberry and lychees. Elderflower was traditionally known as the “Country Folk’s Medicine Chest” because it was used for a variety of remedies. It has antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties and is known to soothe the respiratory system and joints.
P.S It's great added to black tea, mixed with white spirit cocktails, or for poaching salmon.
The Gooseberry Cordial has a sharp flavour which seems to lengthen the neck and widen the eyes. We are very grateful to the farmers in Rotorua who brave the prickly gooseberry bushes to reach for their best berries.
Gooseberries are full of Vitamin C and scientists seem to think they are keeping a lot of healthy goodness up their sleeves. If you look on the internet you'll see experiments have found it improving brain function!
Aroha can't promise to raise your IQ but we can guarantee that you will enjoy a hell of a lot of goodness from the Gooseberry Cordial. So are the big wigs - they've listed it as a finalist in the New Zealand Food Awards. Good on them!
Customers who came to farmers markets told us they loved drinking rhubarb Elderflower Sparkle in cafes but they wanted a rhubarb drink to make at home as well.
The Tart Rhubarb cordial is for them. Our juicy rhubarb comes from a local patch at Waikirikiri Farm and Nelson. Some farmers in the North Island also agreed to supply us with rhubarb during winter so you can drink Tart Rhubarb Cordial all year round.
It is a great soother for the stomach and as you see, the colour is fantastic. Serve it at a party and prepare to pukker up!
As well as being completly delicious, rose-hips are particularly high in vitamin C (as much as 5 x more than citrus fruit!). The hip is the fruit of the rose bush and though not so well know today, it was particularly 'hip' in the 1940's and 50's when it was recommended to give to yound children to keep them healthy through the winters.
Recent research out of Copenhagen university has shown that Rose-Hip's can reduce the pain from osteoarthritis up to 3 times more effectively that panadol!
Our Wild Rose-Hip Cordial is sourced out of Central Otago. During autumn the hills literally turn red with the little berries. This is a great one to serve hot during winter days.