The best natural fruit cordials are far superior to the awful squash drinks on supermarket shelves. Most contain artificial sweetener, which aside from being dodgy, leave a funny aftertaste. Even Robinson’s Barley Water puts it in now, so you can’t find a proper squash with a little natural cane sugar, if you’re playing at Wimbledon. Beware of any cordial that uses artificial anything. Avoid bottles made with pet-toxic xylitol, an animal could die if it licked any up, if it spilled.
Yes, these have a little natural cane sugar. But that’s because it’s too bitter to drink lemon juice! Just brush your teeth a short while after drinking, if you’re worried about decaying teeth. But these are only for treats anyway, and a good way to get more water into you.
Urban Cordial is a unique company that makes fruit cordials, from surplus fruits that would otherwise be thrown away. Bored of working in the city, chief juicer Natasha began to forage for ingredients in her allotment, and turn them into drinks. She uses very little sugar and after selling the drinks at local farmers’ markets, demand grew.
Knowing that over a third of global food does not reach our plates just because it looks odd, she asked local farms to provide surplus produce, and to date has helped to save over 100 tons of fruit from landfill, and any fruit pulp becomes animal feed. Each flavour is made in small batches for rich, ripe and real flavour, and the fruit is of high quality, even if it’s a bit lumpy or bumpy. Naturally delicious from the farm – but with a bit less mud!
- Apple & Blackberry
- Apple, Cinnamon & Clove
- Apple, Lemon & Fennel
- Blackberry & Lavender
- Pear & Ginger
- Raspberry & Rosemary
- Strawberry & Sage
- Rocks Organic is a popular brand, although they are very sweet, so water them down well (and don’t leave opened bottles around, or you’ll be visited by ants and wasps). This company was set up by three dads, and offers orange, lemon or blackcurrant flavours. Found in all good health stores and farm shops, and in many supermarkets.
- Hedgerow Cordials make fruity drinks, from whatever fruits they can lay their hands on. Present flavours include spiced apple, rhubarb ginger, wild elderflower, spiced plum and pear cinnamon.
- Norfolk Cordials believe that the salty sea air, rich soil and summer sun makes some of the tastiest fruits in England. These cold-pressed fruit syrups include strawberry lime, rhubarb ginger, raspberry, wild elderflower, blackberry and blackberry quince.
- Tree Top Press (Yorkshire) makes cordials, from fruits collected from local hedgerows. Elderflowers grow abundantly on the North York Moors. Or choose raspberry, strawberry, rhubarb vanilla or tayberry (like a cross between blackberry and raspberry).
- Luscombe Fruit Crush (Devon) are made from raspberry, rhubarb, lime, or cranberry. These tongue-tingling crushes are crammed with fruit, and bursting with fresh taste and zing. They blend raw organic fruit with Dartmoot spring water. Ginger Beer contains organic Peruvian ginger with organic Sicilian lemon and Dartmoor water, choose from cool or hot or passionate (tropical note).