Sweet woodruff is a herb that everyone knows, but which is used only rarely. If you now also avoid thinking of May wine (or “Maibowle” in Germany), it plays almost no role at all. Sure, you think you know the typical taste of woodruff, but apart from the already mentioned Mai Wine, first of all you will probably think of the industrial woodruff aroma and less of the authentic one from the plant.
Of course I cannot and will not reinvent the wheel here, which is why I can’t escape completely from the shadow of May wine with my Waldmeister Highball (Waldmeister being the German word for sweet woodruff – literally translated it means as much as “master of the woods” – I definitely like it more than the English word for it). With this drink I want to show you how simple it can be to create a nice, refreshing summer drink with sweet woodruff. Granted, it calls for a little patience, since I have infused some Vestal Vodka for 32 hours with fresh woodruff green (without the flowers) in order to make this drink. The fine, pale green woodruff vodka is then combined in a highball glass with a little Supasawa, sugar syrup, white port wine and topped off with soda water. That’s it. Oh yes: I deliberately decided not to use any kind of colouring for the drink. I am aware that most people think of a deep green colour when it comes to sweet woodruff, but in the end this is nothing more than what industrial jelly puddings and the like made you expect.
Recipe “Waldmeister Highball”:
4.5 cl Vestal Blended Potato Vodka infused with sweet woodruff green (see below)
1.5 cl white port wine (doce)
1.5 cl Supasawa
0.75 cl sugar syrup
Vestal Vodka infused with sweet woodruff green: add a small handful of woodruff green without flowers to 250 ml of Vestal Blended Potato Vodka and let infuse for 32 hours. Finally take out the woodruff green and fill into a small screw-cap bottle to store it until you use it.
Preparation: First add all the ingredients (including the garnish, see below) except for the soda water into a glass filled with an ice spear and stir briefly. Finally top off with soda.
Garnish: a twig of sweet woodruff green
Buying sources: At specialized retailers or online.