Smoked Salmon and Gin

By Jo Phillips

With the festive season approaching, our food and drink preferences are likely to change and we suddenly crave things such as smoked salmon, gin, and Christmas cocktails. This can be found in the family-run smoked salmon business H. Forman & Son.

The manufacture was founded by Harry Forman when he arrived in London’s East End from Russia at the beginning of the last century. He pursued the trade he best knew, which was the salmon he imported in barrels of brine from the Baltic. Later, he discovered a much closer source of fresh wild salmon in Scotland. Forman then created a deliciously mild cure to complement the salmon’s unrivalled flavour. Today, the brand remains a family concern, the last of the original London smokeries, while staying faithful to principles established in 1905. Forman is upholding traditional values and skills that would otherwise have died out long ago. One of the gastronomy’s finest foods is the “H. Forman & Son’s Genuine Wild Smoked Scottish Salmon”.


Here are some facts about the history of smoked salmon and some tips on how it should taste:

1) Whilst many people think smoked salmon is an ancient Scottish tradition, it was the fish coming from Scotland, paired with East End Jewish smoking techniques from Eastern Europe that made smoked salmon the great gourmet food it became.
2) The original purpose of smoking salmon was to preserve the fish, in the days refrigeration hardly existed.
3) The smoke is only there to preserve the taste of the salmon and it should never overpower its flavour.
4) London Cur smoked salmon does not taste slimy or smoky, as these characteristics have arisen from mass production.
5) Sliminess comes from the salmon not being properly dried out and smokiness is used as a mask to conceal fish which is not very fresh.
6) Good smoked salmon does not need a lemon squeezed all over it.

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If you like to have some nice drinks with your smoked salmon for Christmas, here are some more inspirations:

This November, Artisan spirit brand, Asterly Brothers launched their new drink “Dispense Amaro”. It combines 24 botanicals and is handmade in their South London dispensatory. Amaro is an Italian herbal liquor that is commonly drunk as an after dinner digestif.

Foxhole Spirits has launched their first gin distilled with English wine grapes. Along with the grapes, this premium London Dry Gin is also infused with the botanical Juniper, Coriander, Angelica Root, Orris Root, Liquorice Root, Bitter Orange, Fresh Lemon Zest, Grapefruit Zest, Angelica Seed and diluted with natural spring water.

Caorunn gin is handmade in the Scottish Highlands, personally crafted by their very own gin master Simon Buley. The premium craft gin is created by infusing five locally-foraged botanicals along with six traditional gin botanicals and natural Scottish water to provide a clean, crisp and aromatic taste.

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