Hudnott’s began with a newly-found obsession for foraging a few years back. Kate, originally from North Somerset, moved to Westward Ho! after some years working and living in various cities as a trained model maker. With a lifelong appreciation of herbs and natural approaches to food and health – Kate’s mother is a “big” organic gardener and natural healing proponent – Kate began taking long walks with her collie dog along coastal paths and burrows, picking fruit along the way and in no time became a regular fossicker, probing the weedy waysides for bounty.
A great glut of blackberries one year left Kate wondering what to do with them all; she had already got immersed into homebrewing wines, but found they mostly tasted “either like sherry or something you strip the paper off your walls with”. The natural progression was to try steeping the fruit in spirits and so came the first and still the best-selling Hudnott’s concoction: blackberry-infused gin. The process is much the same for each variety – fruit or plant material is steeped for three months in 65-litre tubs filled with an alcoholic spirit base. Kate bottled her creations in ornate blue-glass bottles and started giving them to friends and family; they went down well so she started to look into small-scale production and ‘Hudnott’s’ was born.
Mel Roach, Exmoor Magazine Issue No.77 Winter 2016.