I can’t drink Limoncello without thinking of Boston. After my daughter Emily graduated from college her first job as a teacher was at a private school in the small town of Milford, CT. The summer after her first year of teaching, I traveled from Denver to New York City, met my sister Laura there and we drove to Milford. We spent a couple of days exploring that charming town and eating a TON of lobster but then headed to Boston for five days. Five days of gorgeous weather, never seeing a whale on a boat we went out on just to see whales and meeting some of the most amazing people.
I’ve heard more than one person lament their own experience in Boston and it usually includes having to deal with rude and impatient people. We must have been blessed; our entire trip was filled with the most fun people imaginable. I do think we lucked out that we stayed at a gorgeous Bed and Breakfast in the North End; that turned out to be the perfect choice. I’ve not been to Italy but this felt close; the language, the humor and the amazing generosity of spirit we experienced. Everyone was so friendly and fun, even the pet lobster from the Union Oyster House (featured with my daughter and sis above) .
Sure we made it up to Harvard, bought the requisite sweatshirts too and at least made of point of driving by Cheers (loved that show) but I could not wait to get back ‘home’ to our B&B and just visit with the local shopkeepers, have the best damn Eggplant Marinara sandwich imaginable at a small local deli and be treated by the owner of my favorite restaurant to Limoncello after dinner. Great dinner, windows open to the street, twinkle lights sparkling everywhere and Limoncello? It was almost magical.
I had never had Limoncello before and I can promise you this…I’ve never been without it since. I make a favorite lemon cheesecake and have found that adding some Limoncello does not hurt one little bit but typically I just drink it straight up; out of the freezer ice cold. I’ve got some I’ve made myself in my brewing facility (you might call it a garage) that is almost ready and I’ll be posting on that process soon but until then I had to share this amazing little cocktail with you today.
I was ready to do a post on the my home version (done now!) but in just mentioning it to my friend Jenn (especially since I thought it needed another week), she told me about this cocktail she had made with Limoncello. I still had some in a bottle I had purchased and I just knew I had to do this. Originally a recipe from Giada De Laurentiis; Jenn had substituted raspberries for blueberries and since that combination is such a favorite of mine I had no intention of revising again; it was the perfect choice. While I’m certain this is a great light ‘cooler’ I did not have sparkling water on hand but I did have sparkling wine (no big surprise there right?). I am a huge fan of both Cava (sparkling wine from Spain) and Prosecco (the same from Italy) and love it mixed with other liqueurs…besides doesn’t Limoncello and Prosecco seem like the perfect Italian apertif? Glad you agree…cause I sure thought so! This was simply wonderful and I can see it going from brunch to dinner and with a bit of vodka even beyond! Salut!
Make this for a Mom in your life this Sunday…it would be perfect!
- Fresh raspberries (approximately 5 per cocktail)
- A couple of sprigs of mint
- 4 oz cold sparkling wine or lemon flavored sparkling mineral water
- 2 oz Limoncello liqueur, cold (I keep mine in the freezer; it doesn't freeze because of the alcohol content)
- Put your glasses in the freezer if possible, or at least the fridge so that they are cold.
- Put the raspberries on a plate; separated from each other and place in the freezer at least 15 minutes before serving time
- Gently 'smush' a couple of small mint leaves and add to each glass along with 5-6 of the frozen raspberry ice cubes.
- Add limoncello, then the sparkling wine or water.
The proportions for this cocktail use less Limoncello than Giada did. You might want to have a higher proportion of Limoncello but I thought this was perfect.