Summer is near and with it the beginning of endless aperitifs with the sounds of crickets in the background, or maybe waves for the luckiest of us. Every summer the gardens around my place are overflowed with many roses, every colors, every shapes, and they always remind me of a drink I used to love when I was younger.
I grew up in the Brittany countryside next to the famous Brocéliande forest, it's a very special place with many legends and alleged magic places. It’s very beautiful and a bit outside of the « real world » , there, some people still believes in magic and in little creatures of the small world like goblin and "korrigans" (the breton equivalent of the Irish Leprechauns). I shared my childhood between a house always filled with people and noises, craft markets and colorful Renaissance fair.
The most vivid memory I have from those fairs besides the guys dressed as elves and werewolf hunter (true story) is the delicious beverage I used to drink there. It's called «hypocras » it’s a medieval drink that I think you can find in all Europe, it's made with spices and sometimes flowers infused in wine and it's delicious.
There is many version of that drink, like many of old recipes everyone have they own way to make it. My favorites version was one of my mom’s friend who used to make it with roses. To me drinking a glass of her hypocras was like drinking a garden in full bloom during summer.
It’s one of the first alcoholic drink I taste and at the time i really feel like i was drinking some magical drink. To be honest my version of that drink is nothing compares to the marvellous drink I have the memory of but it’s still delicious and super refreshing, perfect for summer night. It’s the beauty of memories, nothing can compare to some first times.
Rose's perfumed hypocras
- 750 ml Rosé wine (Not too sweet)
- 80 g Sugar (see notes)
- 2 big Cinnamon sticks
- 15 g Fresh ginger peeled
- 2 Big Cardamoms pods (or three small)
- 5 Coriander seeds
- 25/30 g roses petals (The most perfumed and fragrant you can find)
- ¼ teaspoons rosewater (optional)
- Pour the wine with the sugar in a heavy bottom pan on low heat.
- Add the cinnamon sticks, the ginger peeled and cut in big bits , the grounded cardamoms and corianders seeds and the roses petals. Let it warm on a low heat until the sugar is completely melted and mixed with the wine. Take away from the fire and let it cool down. ( You can put your spices in a big paper tea bag to make the filtered operation easier).
- Once your mix is cool down, transfer it in a glass bottle or in a big jar and let it infuse at least 12 hours ( I usually prepare the hypocras on the evening and let it rest the all night and part of the day but you can also prepare it early in the morning and it will be ready for your evening drink)
- After the minimum 12 hours, filtered the spices and petals of your drink with a very thin strainer. Serve it very cold, with ice cube if you like that.