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Legends and delights of the Sorbo

The Sorbo of the birders is a graceful tree with long leaves and very red berries, which in the Italian-speaking regions almost always takes the name of Sorbo, followed by the variant “of hunters” or “of the fowlers”. Its red fruit in clusters is favored by many bird species, which were captured by hunters using the tree as bait. Hence the Latin name Aucuparia, derivato is derived from the verb “accurate,” which is to catch birds.

Sorbo in the Northern countries and the legend of the Rune

However, in Anglo-Saxon countries and northern Europe, its name recalls the mystery of traditions. For the British, the rowan is not known as much as Mountain Ash. More often, they call him Rowan. And Rowan has in common with the term Rogn – used this time in Scandinavia – the etymology, which refers to the ancient rūnar, norse or “secret writing”. The rune. Used in magical and religious rituals from the old Germanic world, the rune was writing composed of graphic, alphabetic, and symbolic signs engraved on the wood of the Sorbo. Here, the druids crafted their magic formulas. Over time, the rowan has taken on such a strongly beneficial connotation that anyone afraid of witches and werewolves did not forget to keep the wood and red berries at hand.

The Sorbo tody, ornamental tree and toast for hunters

Today the Sorbo with its slender trunk and the bright red color that shows off in autumn, is well distributed in pre-alpine and alpine areas, where it grows to an altitude of 2400 meters and is often used as a decorative plant for parks and gardens.

Even in unromantic times like ours, however, the Sorbo preserves part of its mysterious charm. For example, an Austrian tradition wants the distillation of its fruit to produce a fine and very aromatic brandy which is still used today by hunters from all over the Alps in the celebration rite that follows the venison.

The Temelin of the Boldini

In Monticello, in Graubünden, the Boldini winery has drawn on this tradition and created Temelin, a distillate with aromatic and harmonious notes, capable of releasing alpine scents as soon as the bottle is opened. The fruit of the Sorbo, like raspberry, yields little in terms of alcohol, and that is why several kilos of fruit are needed to get to a few liters of distillate. Temelin is a strictly artisanal distillation, with a bain-marie alembic still and manual bottling. A real treat to bring to the table together with its legend!