September 8, 2007


Bill Dowd photo

Deer and chipmunks have made short work of the strawberry plants in my backyard garden again this year. However, I have found a liquid version of the beloved fruit that has been getting me through these troubling times.


This vodka-and-strawberry concoction from Germany (imported by Duggan's International Imports) is a pleasant attack on the palate. Despite the presence of some artificial flavors, there is no doubt there are strawberries in abundance. The thick consistency of the 30-proof drink is lush with berry pulp that constitutes 51% of the mix.

Its makers suggest Xuxu be enjoyed well-chilled and straight, or over crushed ice, or mixed with sparkling wine or as a dessert topping. The message is, this is bold stuff. It makes a fine late-summer ingredient, the sort of thing that can help you mellow out .

My preference is to dilute it to some small degree. I found it a bit overpowering in both mouthfeel and strength of taste when tried straight, even very cold. The sparkling wine idea is best, say a nice spumante. This is an intriguing product that won't curl up and die when sharing glass space with something else.

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