Roughly chop your pitted cherries and place them in a medium bowl with ½ cup Norton Wine.
Let sit at room temp for 1 hour then drain cherries in a sieve over a bowl. Keep both the cherries and the syrup.
Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Butter and flour two, 8 inch cake pans and set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat together 4 Tbsp soft butter, 1½ cups granulated sugar, 2 eggs and 1 tsp vanilla.
Beat on high speed for 7 min until light and fluffy.
Whisk in 1 cup warm milk until smooth.
Sift together 1⅓ cups all-purpose flour, ¾ cups unsweetened cocoa, ⅛ tsp salt, and 2½ tsp baking powder.
Fold the sifted mixture into the batter just until combined. Transfer to your prepared cake pans and bake at 350˚F for 30 min or until toothpick comes out clean. Remove from the oven and once the cakes are cool enough to handle, transfer to wire racks for them to cool completely.
Cherry Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
In a medium bowl combine butter, powdered sugar, cocoa, vanilla, cream/milk, cherry/Norton syrup, and salt and beat for 5-7 minutes until light and fluffy.
Add more powdered sugar to thicken and stiffen up frosting or more cream/milk to thin frosting out depending on desired consistency.
Assembling the Cake
Once you are ready to assemble the cake, slice each of your cake layers in half horizontally into two even layers (Tip: don’t slice your layers early or they may dry out). A serrated knife works best. Place one layer cut side up on a cake stand. Stir ¼ cup cold filtered water into the remaining cherry Norton syrup. Generously brush the first cake layer with ⅓ of the cherry Norton syrup. Cover the top with frosting and top with ⅓ of the chopped boozy cherries. Repeat with the next three layers but don’t put any syrup or frosting over the final layer. Refrigerate your unfrosted cake for 15 – 20 min to let it rest, then frost the top and sides. Decorate to your heart’s delight and serve to the people you love!