Citrus fruits and warmer weather to me are match made in heaven. Whenever I think of citrus I can help but be transported back to Italy’s Amafi Coast sipping a lemon cello at sunset with breathtaking views of the ocean. While Positano and Amalfi are famous for their refreshing lemons, a little further south in Sicily on the sun-drenched slopes of Mt Etna grows another extrodinary citrus: Sanguinello, Sicily’s Blood Orange.
This summer Hendrick’s Gin Master Distiller Leslie Gracie has created the world’s first blood orange liqueuer which will bring the Italian summer to you. Solerno collects the fragrant oils from Sicily’s blood orange and marries them together with ingredients such as lemon and orange to create a bright and refined liqueur. On the nose, this liqueur bursts with the whole-fruit blood orange, orange blossom and a hint of zesty lemon yielding a velvety sweetness, balancing tartness and full body with a lasting, dry finish.
Solerno can be served on its own on ice, added with prosecco to create a sparkling cocktail or incorporate into a Sangria – the list of refreshing drinks it endless. The signature cocktail associated with this vibrant liquere is the Solerno Serata, one of my personal favoutites. This a simple but delicate sparkling cocktail which pairs Solerno with soda water, ruby red grapefruit juice, bitters and a sprig of rosemary. The result is a delightfully refreshing cocktail that will revitalise the senses on a warm summer’s day.
30ml ruby grapefruit juice
60ml sparkling water
2 dashes of orange bitters
Build ingredients in a stemless glass and stir well. Garnish with a sprig of rosemary.
Other Solerno cocktails include the Fresh Sicilian, Sanguinello Sour, Solerno Mattina and Solerno Punch, along with a fresh twists on classics such as the Cosmopolitan, Negroni and Margarita. For more Solerno Cocktail ideas visit the Solerno Liqueur website.
Solerno Liqueur 700ml RRP $70. Available from leading liquor merchants in Australia.