Sloe Port – how to use leftover sloes

Luscious sloe gin will inevitably result in spare berries when sloes and gin are separated. There is only so much sloe chocolate you can eat and extra sloe gin you can make before boredom sets in. I was informed by a kind friend that sloe port was worth a try but receptacles were thin on the ground. Fortunately my Granny had given me a Rumtopf a while back which was perfect for transforming my gin soaked berries into deep red port.
Sloe Port
First and foremost separate the gin from the berries. Not as easy as it sounds; one kilo of sloe berries fills a much larger space than the average sieve provides. I would recommend the bath rather than the kitchen sink to help stop any escaping berries and gin. Once this task has successfully been completed, make the sloe port.
Put the fat, gin filled berries into a container and mix in 100g sugar (per 1kg berries). Pour in a bottle of wine and leave to mingle for three months. Once the soaking is complete, add 200ml of brandy and leave for another month. Wonderful sloe port should await. I’m looking forward to trying mine at the end of March.
Adding red wine to the sloes
When making my sloe gin I ignored the advice to use cheap gin. I’ve tried sloe gin using cheap gin and nicer gin and it does seem to make a difference. I applied the same rule to the port; I used something I would have been happy to drink. Only time will tell.
To find out what the sloe port turned out like you can find the taste test here.


  1. says

    I’ve never made sloe gin, as I really just don’t drink enough spirits. But I do drink a lot of port. I foresee some sloe gathering in eight months time!

  2. says

    I don’t think we have these berries over here but that looks like a great transformation and how not to throw away ingredients.

    Certainly would like to give a try to this lovely drink.

  3. says

    Now you’ve got me wishing I still had a Rumtopf! We used to have one when we were in Germany (and we did use it for making the real thing), but it got broken in our move back to the UK. Still miss it.
    When I make the Sloe Gin I usually throw away the sloes, because I reckon that most of their flavour must have come out, but your technique suggests not. Must try it in the Autumn. Sounds like good use of a “waste product”, but what will you do with the delicious Port-soaked sloes when the time comes???

  4. Anonymous says

    Hey people, just a pedant here, but sloes are not a berry, they are a drupe. They have a stone in the centre like cherries, plums apricots. Tell your friends!

  5. celeriacsoup says

    The better the quality of ingredients the better the quality of the end product. I made some sloe brandy using what I later found out was a very expensive bottle of cognac; it was the best sloe product I’ve ever made.


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