This weekend I had the pleasure of working at The BBC Good Food Show at the NEC. If you haven’t heard of this (have you been living under a rock?) it’s a four-day event where the catering world comes together to sell the middle-class public things they don’t really need. Like Kale Brownies. Or the finest Japanese handcrafted cooking knives that will cut through a brick wall.
From £21.75 to £94.00 a day, people wandered round halls 17-20 of the NEC to spend a ridiculous amount of money on luxuries that are deemed to be essential. If you paid the right amount of money, you had the pleasure of seeing domestic goddess Mary Berry shake her goods in a transportable kitchen, alongside silver fox Paul Hollywood and culinary maverick (that’s a thing now) James Martin. Other BBC cooking show mascots were also available.
Anyway, I’m not here to tell you about The Good Food Show.
I’m here to tell you about the best orange liqueur I’ve ever tried in my years. At the ripe old age of 22 (get it?), I can categorically tell you that Solerno is alcoholic liquid happiness in a bottle. And the bottle is super fit as well.
Solerno. It’s like the Windows 10 of orange based liqueur
Solerno is a blood orange liqueur made on the Island of Sicily, by Master Distiller Lesley Gracie, who is also the creator of our favourite mascara thinner Hendricks Gin. Solerno uses the freshest blood oranges grown on Mt. Etna to create a fresh and punchy liqueur. The blood orange oil is paired with Italian lemons and married to a neutral grain spirit. It is delicious over ice, or lengthened out with soda water or tonic, or in your prosecco.
Or with a straw in the bottle…
You could make marmalade with it and give your breakfast a bit of a buzz (I kid). Or Madeira cake. It would be lovely drizzled over pancakes. The possibilities are endless.
But why is this product different to other orange liqueurs?
Well, at 40% ABV it is a helluva lot stronger than most orange liqueurs. It smoother and punchier than what’s out there too. It has a balanced tart finish, and you get this all in an 80 proof spirit.
Oh, also the basic bitches of orange liqueurs use the orange peel in the process, whereas Solerno takes the whole orange and uses the juices and oils, which gives it the vibrant orange and lemon flavours.
It isn’t your typical bottle of value Vodka or Gin that you drank at Uni before waking up surrounded by leftover kebab meat and echoes of shame and regret. It is a spirit to be enjoyed and tasted.
Solerno is available at Harvey Nichols for £49.95 or online.