Earlier this month, we tempted a group of Dry January naysayers to a double-blind tasting of our locally-made liqueurs, pitting them against the market leading alternative.
We’ve always been confident that our approach to liqueur-making has resulted in a superior quality product, but we wanted to be certain and decided to find the best-selling alternative on the market and put them head-to-head.
Attendees were completely oblivious as to which sample was which, as we ensured that all liqueurs were decanted off-site, into plain identical bottles, only differentiated by “Liqueur A” and “Liqueur B”.
Attendees were asked to make sure that they continuously cleansed their palate with water between sips and were given 10-15 minutes to really get to grips with the flavours and make an informed decision.
We tested our Raspberry, Créme de Cassis and Espresso Vodka. Damson Gin and Horseradish Vodka were excluded from the test as there aren’t any comparable producers in these flavours.
Haut Maison Raspberry Liqueur vs Chambord Black Raspberry Liqueur
Our Raspberry Liqueur is made with Grade A Raspberries and contains no additives, flavourings or colourings – all the colour and flavour comes from the whopping half a pound of raspberries that we squeeze into each 350ml bottle.
What’s more, we macerate our raspberries for four whole months, with no heat used, that way the raspberries naturally deteriorate in the alcohol base without any flavour being lost. Once we’re finished, we then painstakingly press the spent raspberries (often around 200 kilos at a time) and add the juice back to the batch, to pack in even more flavour.
And the fruits of our labour (sorry, couldn’t resist), certainly paid off – 70% of those testing preferred our Raspberry Liqueur to Chambord, with 66% rating the flavour as Good or Very Good.
Haut Maison Espresso Vodka vs Kahlua
Our Espresso Vodka is made with Grade A++ Malawi Pamwamba ground coffee which is roasted locally by Bean14 and steeped that very day before being cold-brewed for 48 hours, it doesn’t get much fresher than that.
The results? 63% of those surveyed preferred Haut Maison Espresso Vodka to Kahlua with 63% rating our liqueur as either Good or Very Good.
Haut Maison Créme de Cassis vs White Heron British Cassis
We wanted to test our Cassis against the market leader, however we knew hands-down that our liqueur would far surpass in testing, so we went for a smaller producer that shared the same values as us. White Heron British Cassis has won four Great Taste Gold Awards and a World Liqueur Award to boot, so we knew we had our work cut out here.
Our Créme de Cassis is made with juicy blackcurrants, to a traditional French farmhouse recipe, with a pinch of black pepper and cloves.
The results? It was a tie! 50% preferred our Créme de Cassis, with many citing it difficult to tell them apart.