Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Pastis and Limoncello

After reading my book, a friend mentioned he had never heard of pastis.  Ah, pastis!  A quintessential French drink.  Almost, dare I say, the national drink of France?  (Well, southern France, that is).  Pastis is a liqueur, flavored with aniseed, poured over a couple of ice cubes, and mixed with a small amount of water. Ricard, Pernod and Pastis 51 brands, owned by Pernod Ricard, are the standards, and at this point, monopolize the production, but I have found so many different variations and producers in my searches across the city of Paris.  I buy different brands of pastis, and find quite a few different brands at the Monoprix, where pastis is plentiful, and in large sized bottles.   Next on my trip docket is a trip to Marseille to buy pastis in the city of production, the city from which it originates.  

Limoncello, on the other hand, is a lemon liqueur that exudes sun and southern Italy, where it is primarily produced.  It is best enjoyed chilled, as a digestif; the crema di limoncello is as smooth as silk.  My friend Karen recently shared her recipe with me for making limoncello, which I am going to try out, and post, if I can successfully create the taste I have come to love.  As I drink limoncello whenever I am in Italy, I am hoping my homemade limoncello isn’t defeated by location, location, location.  If it works, I have found the perfect Christmas gifts to give to friends! 

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