Harvest in the Hebrides


We’re firmly into the harvesting season, every day a cursory glance round greenhouse and croft reveals piles of plants to be picked and our careful wild harvests are also gaining pace. Our plan with Wild Eve was always to create a sustainable drink using as many plants that we could grow or wild harvest responsibly and we’re so nearly there. We’re still on the hunt for a small organic pink grapefruit farm, so if you know of one, do let us know.

The beautiful weather we’ve enjoyed for weeks has offered us the most wonderful harvest. The Roses this year have been magnificent with no wind or rain to knock the petals off or waterlog the buds making them rot before they open. The scent of the wild Rosa rugosa is breathtaking. I can smell it as I walk down the road to our favourite picking spots. This Rose may not have many petals compared to well-bred garden varieties, but the scent is arresting, fruity and floral in equal measure. We love it. When we pick it our fingers are sticky with scent. We leave the pollinated part to develop into rose hips which we use later in the year in the Of Harris Fruit.

The Honeysuckle that we’ve planted on the croft and in the beds of the Temple are romping away without sheep to nibble them down to nothing. The Temple Honeysuckle is making a dash for the door so we’re gently persuading it to go round the top. The flowers are so pretty and in the evening when the scent is at its best I’ve been nipping out to pick.

Very shortly the Of Harris Leaf will be available, we’re just waiting for the label to arrive. There are bottles sitting on the shelf at the workshop all ready to go, so the minute we have the labels, the limited edition bottles will be available on the website.

Soon after, the Meadowsweet and Red Clover will be in full bloom so we’ll start the process of picking and drying it ready to make the 2023 version Of Harris Flowers. I really love these seasonal treats that surround Wild Eve, they develop key flavours of the drink. The Of Leaf has a wonderfully savoury note, complementing beautifully the base notes of Sugar Kelp, Gentian and Ashwagandha. The Of Harris Flower picks out the Rose and Honeysuckle, whilst the Of Harris Fruit brings out the middle fruity notes of the Sloes and Juniper. This year I expect the Of Harris Flower to be really full of flavour given the dry picking season we’ve had that seems to have concentrated the intense Rose taste.

 Our work in Harris is constant, growing, tending plants, picking, drying and making. There isn’t really a down season for us and as more and more people are discovering the joy of our adult mood boosting non-alc, we’re excited to see where we can get to. We’re up to 60 Michelin starred restaurants and 5* hotels which is absolutely marvellous. We’re also in some other beautiful little restaurants up and down the UK. If you have a suggestion of somewhere you like to eat or drink, do let us know and we’ll do the rest. Recently we were stocked in Gleneagles – both the main estate and the townhouse in Edinburgh which is very lovely.

 There is something so heartening about people all over the UK choosing Wild Eve and supporting our little business which carries the flora of this island in every bottle. We are only a team of 5 but somehow, with the help of friends from far and wide, we’re building a really special business here in Harris, on this remote Hebridean island. If you’d like to visit us and join in the plant work, let us know and we’ll be very happy to include you. At the moment we have Joe and Karla here from the US and very welcome they are too. Karla was out picking seaweed at low tide this morning and Joe took to the water a few days ago to gather a little Bogbean for the bitter note in Wild Eve.

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