A tradition revived, a recipe refreshed, and spirits restored
Here at Mereworth, or MAROURDE to use its ancient name, we have reinvented the world's oldest drink. Blending 9,000 years of history and a passion for winemaking, this thoroughly modern aperitif comes from steeping herbs and botanicals in our estate honey wine.
The perfect harmony of bitter and sweet, with a lingering zesty orange finish. Our thoroughly English twist on the Aperitif is delightful on its own over ice, topped with tonic as a Spritz, or as an essential cocktail component.
Marourde draws great inspiration from its creator, William Boscawen, and it is only natural that his life and experiences have moulded our Aperitif into the drink it is today.
William’s time working with Martini, developing an interest in vermouth, and time spent in Italy with his wife entrenched him in the quintessential Italian culture of the ‘aperitivo’; meeting friends and relaxing over a drink at the end of the working day. These aperitivos are often livened with a Spritz to bring a hint of sweetness to the bitterness of the vermouth.
When William moved back to his Kent roots, he threw his efforts into extracting all the best he could from the land of his ancestors; through farming, understanding local botanicals, honey production and setting up his own vineyard. The synthesis of the aperitivo culture and Kentish, locally inspired ingredients explains the conception of Marourde, and the journey of its creation.
Honey wine is steeped in mythology. The Ancient Greeks called honey wine ‘ambrosia’, believing that it was the drink of the gods, fallen from heaven as dew and harvested by the bees. Warriors’ legends abound of Norsemen filling the skulls of their slain enemies with honey wine to toast to victory. Soldiers, on the eve of Waterloo would infuse their honey wine with gunpowder to instil them with courage for the battlefield. Honey wine is rooted in a timeless association with power, passion and immortality, and was thought to have magical and sacred properties, with the capacity to bestow healing and prolong life
The Original Wedding Toast
One of the most common associations with honey wine is its union with weddings. Honey wine was the original drink of the wedding toast, supped to bring assurances of good luck and happiness to the newly-weds. As well as being used for the toasts, the bride and groom would traditionally be gifted a supply of ‘honey wine’. With this, they could continue the toasting together for the month, or ‘moon-cycle’, following the wedding, hence the term ‘honeymoon’. It was believed that the month of drinking this ‘nectar’ would bring increased fertility to the union. If a baby was conceived within the first year of marriage, credit would be given to the honey wine.
A word for the humble bee
As longstanding farmers, we keenly feel our responsibility as stewards of the land, caring for the environment and the local produce and botanics from which we draw inspiration. As creators of honey wine, we have a particular interest in the welfare of the bee population. With 70 hives near to our vineyards, we blend our own honey into every batch of Marourde. We are proud to champion and support the bees, to the absolute advantage of the taste and quality of the product we create, as well as the world around us. As part of the award-winning Mereworth Wines, we are responsible for a variety of sustainable farming practices here in Kent that preserve and promote the bees’ natural habitat, ensuring their future and our own. By continuing to raise the profile of original honey-wine, we aim to encourage greater awareness of our environment and the prosperity of the English Bee’s future
Cocktails & recipes
- On the rocks
- Mulled Marourde