Proudfoot & Co in Winchester is serving up drinks #ForTheBoldandCurious derived from foraged, fermented and barrel aged goods.
Owner Eoghan is an expert in all things botanical and foraged and a whizz at inventing, rediscovering and reinterpreting drinks to devour.
‘Life should be full of constant discovery’ is Proudfoot’s tag line, which I couldn’t agree more with. If you like something a bit different and want to discover something new then this one’s going to be right up your street.
I totally fell in love with this place, from the wildly knowledgable owner, the pretty interior and truly unique and incredible drinks…
Proudfoot & Co
Seeking out those rare ingredients, lost techniques and recipes of old to create one of a kind drinks is the whole ethos of Proudfoot & Co.
Special attention is paid to sourcing ‘the last of’, the ‘one of a kinds’ and sustainable local produce. There’s nothing gimmicky about this place, it believes in preserving awesome ingredients, restoring native produce and it supports this in its actions.
After literally five minutes speaking to the owner you’ll understand it’s in his bones, it’s the life blood of the business and it’s in the bricks and mortar of the shop. And, it’s refreshing, it’s not jumping on the bandwagon, Proudfoot & Co are clearly on the edge of a movement, charging forward, blazing that trail.
Oh, and this isn’t about that ‘boozy’ experience either all the drinks are <0.5% ABV for, as they say, ‘a more inclusive and unique drinking experience’. Hooray for no hangover and being able to make the most of the day after!
30 St. Thomas Street, Winchester, Hampshire SO23 9HF
Nestled on one of Winchester’s beautiful side streets, Proudfoot resides in a beautifully renovated listed building. It’s literally just off the high street, a breeze to find and very easy to get to.
Inside Proudfoot & Co owner Eoghan has picked out every detail of the stunning shop from the tiles to the design of the handmade furniture from Indonesia. And, oh my goodness, the effort and attention to detail really has paid off.
It’s very chic but still relaxed, it’s definitely found the perfect balance between the two. It’s such a lovely place to hang out.
Mr Bright Lights Big City (Mr BLBC) and I spent a long and lazy afternoon soaking up the atmosphere and enjoying the drinks.
Drinks with a difference
The menu is of course seasonal, due to the nature of foraging and what Eoghan can find and source reliably. I’m gutted I missed the summer seasonal specials but I can’t wait to go and sample the more wintery drinks that were upcoming at the time I visited.
One detail to notice is that by each drink the time to make it is also listed, with some drinks literally being 10 years in the making.
The first drink we ordered was the Hampshire Honeydew, I don’t really like honey but Mr BLBC had this and I tried it and loved it.
It doesn’t really taste of honey, I described it as what I’d imagine licking a Victorian would taste like. If an era had an associated taste, this would represent the Victorian time period. Honestly, while that’s probably the most ridiculous description ever, you’ll know what I mean when you drink it. It’s really unique flavour, and bizarrely leaves you wanting more.
The Woodsman, my chosen drink, I would describe as a next level iced coffee. It almost has a Canadian vibe, the blend is a hybrid coffee and maple drink. In it is five year, bourbon barrel-aged maple syrup which Eoghan let us try neat – the maple syrup is remarkable and kind of smokey. I would one hundred percent buy this and have it at home if it came in a bottle.
The maple is layered with a light-roast chicory root milk, a double shot of cold brew espresso and cold milk foam. Coffee lovers, you’re going to want to give this a try. It is sweet but also smokey and the combination is ridiculously delicious.
Foraged Cream Soda
The Foraged Cream Soda was a seriously refreshing citrus, frothy affair. It wasn’t like a conventional cream soda at all, and you could taste the bourbon vanilla pods under cutting the citrus.
I also had a little sample of the ‘Black Mitcham’ Peppermint Milk. If you have a sweet tooth, you’ll be thrilled with this minty number.
Oh I’m kicking myself that I forgot to take a picture of the menu. I cannot for the life of me remember the name of this drink. This is so typical, I always get over excited when I discover something wildly amazing and new! Mr BLBC had this drink that is barrel aged and is topped with locally made jerky. This is the one I can’t remember the name of. I’m sure you’ll either recognise it on the menu or Eoghan will be able to point it out to you!
It was warm, savoury and moreish – a bit like a non alcoholic peaty single malt whiskey. But, it also had a vinegary edge to it too. These drinks are very unique and so it’s no wonder they may not be straight forward to describe. It’s definitely an excuse to try them all!
British Drinks Innovators
Everything from the owner to the drinks and setting is full of whimsy, charm and character. But, most of all it’s all rooted in lost arts and under utilised produce.
There’s an absurd amount of technical knowledge and process that goes into each and every ingredient, let alone drink.
Eoghan and his team go out of their way to make sure you’re happy and guide you through the menu. Their recommendations are very useful and helped me decide what I want. But, I think I came to the conclusion that I just need to work my way through the menu!
Oh and they are the stockist of rare and endangered British products too.
Visit Proudfoot & Co
Well it’s safe to say I’ve already planned our next visit. I’m trying to get a place on the next foraging course because, learning from Eoghan would be such a fun experience.
Proudfoot & Co has rocketed to one of my top things to do in Winchester. I know you’ll get the vibe of this place as soon as you walk through the door. And, I’m absolutely sure you’ll enjoy it as much as I did.
If you liked this, you might like these posts too…
- WALK THE WINCHESTER WATER MEADOWS
- KING ARTHUR’S ROUND TABLE IN THE GREAT HALL, WINCHESTER
- THE A TO Z OF THINGS TO DO IN HAMPSHIRE
If you want to remember this for later, save it on Pinterest using the images below or share by using one of the buttons.