Thanks to Mario Batali’s grocery powerhouse, Eataly, the amount of Italian products that I am familiar has expanded exponentially. And amidst my new acquaintances, I have found my new love (sorry bf), Lurisia Chinotto soda. At first sip, I was surprised by the flavor because it is unlike any American soda that I have ever tasted. But the second sip, oh the second, proved to be a delightful taste bud experience…and so was every subsequent gulp.
Chinotto is flavored with an environmentally temperamental fruit that comes from a tree only grown in specific regions of Italy (Malta, Liguria, Tuscany, Sicily, and Calbria), called the the myrtle-leaved orange tree.
The fruit’s flavor is much more bitter than other oranges, and to me, tastes more like a lime. It has a unique tartness that really activates the taste buds at the back of the tongue. Caramel plays a large role in this soda, as well. It’s a great combination with the bitterness of the orange, giving it a deeper flavor.
I’ve found that Chinotto works well with whiskey (very similar to a whiskey sour), and would probably be amazing mixed with rum.
I highly encourage you to try it alone or with a drink like the one below:
Chinotto & Whiskey
- 1 shot whiskey
- 4 fresh raspberries
- crushed iced
- 6 oz. cold Chinotto
- lime wedge for garnish (or myrtle-leaved orange, if you can get your hands on one)
Shake whiskey, raspberries, and ice in a cocktail shaker. Pour into a chilled glass, then top with the Chinotto. Garnish with a lime wedge and enjoy.