Have you taken your tot and tasted a mouthful of mercury? Prevent a tainted brew by learning how to clean your hip flask properly with our advice

Learn how to clean your hip flask properly to prevent ever wasting a sip. Have you taken a mouthful of your best brewed sloe gin or damson vodka, only to taste a mouthful of mercury? There’s no problem with your brewing – just your hip flask. Follow our advice on how to clean your hip flask properly in time for your next tot.

And for inspiration on what to brew for next season’s hip flask, take your pick from The Field’s concoctions. Elderberry vodka is straightforward and will last for months, follow our top tips on how to make elderberry vodka. Or if you have tried the standard hedgerow fare, opt for a more unusual vodka. Carnation vodka is simple to brew and will certainly make a talking point.

HOW TO CLEAN YOUR HIP FLASK

I have recently purchased a large, silver-plated hip-flask and having washed it out with water I topped it up with my home-made damson vodka but, to my displeasure, I noted a distinct unpleasant aftertaste. Having sampled the vodka that did not go into the flask I know my prized brew is not to blame. Have you any suggestions as to how I might sort this out please?
MH, by email

Field readers recommend several useful methods.

Firstly, fill the flask with a solution of warm water and a few drops of washing-up liquid, shake well and then thoroughly clean with warm water before use.

To clean your hip flask you can also fill the flask with equal quantities of vinegar or lemon juice and hot water, secure the lid, shake well, then leave for about five minutes before rinsing thoroughly.

Alternatively, pour into the flask a solution of 2 tsp of bicarbonate of soda mixed with a cup of distilled vinegar, shake well for 20 to 30 seconds, empty and rinse thoroughly.

Once your hip flask is sparkling clean, and your home brew tastes as it should, take inspiration from the latest edition of The Field, and step outside…