|Rum Numb Davey|
Joined: Jul 17, 2005
From: Phoenix, AZ
|Posted: 2005-08-14 05:05 am  Permalink|
Not to be confused with NON-Sweet fruit eau de vies which I went over in another thread.
The MOST known should be Curacao (originally from the Island of the same name). This is the vital cordial in Tiki drink mixing obviously. Every single Dutch distilling firm makes Curacao, to the point that Curacao has become the generic name for all orange-flavored liqueurs,
The House of de Kuper makes a colorless, green, blue, and an orange (which is a sort of half and half -half Curacao and half orange bitters).
They also make a Vieille Maison, which is orange in color, but based on brandy, instead of the other curacaos, which are on neutral spirits.
Bols, of course, makes a similar range, as well.
The Dutch also settled in South Africa, and they created a fantastic citrus liqueur based on Naartjes (South African tangerines). They call it Van der Hum (which is like calling it Mr. What's my Name).
It is not only the Dutch, of course.
The Greeks make Kitro
The Turks make Aurum
The Italians make Aurum, and they make an amazing liqueur called Corfiore made from tiny Japanese cumquats.
Of course, our regal French friends make the two most widely known which is Grand Marnier, which is cognac based
Cointreau is neutral spirits based. Both use bitter orange peels, but Cointreau also uses sweet peels.
Parfait Amour is made by the Dutch and French distillers, but is based on citrus oils, however it is colored, flavored, and scented of violets.
Israel has a funky Chocolate Orange liqueur called Sabra that used to be made out of Sabra cactus.
After the citrus liqueurs, come the cherry and apricot liqueurs.
Two main cherry varieties are used.
First there is the Maraschino, originally from the Dalmatian Coast of the Adriatic, but now primarily Italy. Brands like Luxardo are produced from this.
Also, we have the richly red cherries like France's Rocher Brandy
Denmark's Cherry Heering, used in a Singapore Sling.
England also has the delicious Grant's Morella Cherry Brandy.
Ameretto (Di Saronno most famous brand) is the most famous apricot liqueur, which also uses almonds for the nutty finish.
Sloe Gin is another English product that is made by steeping sloes (sloe berries) in sweetened gin. Hawker's is the most famous Sloe Gin.
Some liqueurs are made solely of the "stones" (pits) of cherries and apricots. In Bordeaux, they make Vueve Champion Noyau Rose. This unique liqueur came from Martinique in the West Indies originally.
Peaches are also used to make sweet liqueurs. Peche is the famous French brand, and here in America we have Southern Comfort. Originally made in New Orleans of peaches, herbs, and oranges, with a base of old Bourbon whiskey,
Trader Vic loved Southern Comfort, and so do I. In his book on Food and Drink, he stated that Southern Comfort should get a boost and could be used for many fine libations. It looks like the Trader got his wish, as Southern Comfort is the fourth best selling liqueur in the world.
I close this primer on sweet Fruit liqueurs with crème of cassis, which is based on blackcurrants. It takes about 15-20 pounds of black currents to make one 750ml bottle. Now that is intense!
My favorite brand is Gabriel Bodier, which produces a Super cassis of amazing extraction.
I owe Mr. Gordon Brown of Scotland a tremendous debt of gratitude for his amazing mentoring of me when I lived there. He was, perhaps, one of the most knowledgeable men on Planet Earth on Spirits and Liqueur. He passed much of his expertise and insights down to me and I am forever grateful. We had multitudes of fantastic imbibing sessions of every conceivable brand when he was preparing his tome on the classic spirits of the world. He passed away way too young in 1994, and I really think there is a void in the guild of spirits writers without him. If any in the TC community want one great spirits book...purchase his!
Just finished a bottle of Havana Club Anejo 3 Anos, which was excellantly suited for many rum cocktails!