There are a few types of spirits that you won’t find here on the blog. The reasons for this are quite different: some I use so rarely myself that they simply don’t have much relevance for me, others are not particularly widespread in general, so that there are simply few recipes in which they play a role – and still others I simply don’t like. Admittedly, there aren’t really many of them; in fact, strictly speaking (perhaps apart from some cheap baijius), there’s really only one genre of spirit I absolutely dislike: amaretto. (provided test product)*
Why is that so? Well, I simply don’t like marzipan since my earliest childhood. I find it sticky, penetratingly sweet, somehow unpleasantly perfume-like and when I think of Mozartkugeln or marzipan flowers, I lose my appetite. Definitely not good conditions for a task that I nevertheless set myself today: to taste and review an amaretto. And even if what I have written so far can hardly be surpassed in subjectivity, I would still like to try to take as objective a perspective as possible.
But before you get a completely wrong impression: I do like almonds. Very much even! This is important because the Adriatico Roasted Almonds Amaretto we’re talking about today is all about almonds. “Isn’t that normal for Amaretto?” some will surely ask now. No! In fact, most amarettos are made with apricot kernels. From hand-picked Apulian almonds of the variety “Filippo Cea” Jean-Robert Bellanger produces the Adriatico Amaretto in Italy. For this, the almonds are first roasted and then macerated in alcohol. Finally, vanilla, cinnamon, cocoa and a hint of coffee also find their way into the Adriatico Amaretto, which, by the way, is sweetened with only half the usual amount of sugar for the genre and finally rounded off with a hint of sea salt from the Adriatic Sea. With 28% vol. it finally comes in the bottle and is available for around 30 euros. On paper, at least, it all reads quite wonderfully. If only there would not be my personal “problem” that it is still an Amaretto.
But it doesn’t help, daringly I rise to the challenge!
Aroma: Ok, the first impression is at the same time completely different from what I thought, but also confirms certain expectations. First of all, there is marzipan in my nose, I can’t help it. But just also very nice notes of roasted almonds, subtle caramel tones, even a subtle nuance of smoke and associations of salt. There are also interesting notes of rose water.
Taste: I try to ignore the marzipan part and focus on the almond and spice notes. Above all, what is really noticeable is that we are dealing with a less sweet Amaretto. The Adriatico is by no means sticky sweet, but brings nice almond notes, cinnamon and cocoa with it; noticeable depth through salt nuances, a hint of coffee, again minimal smoke associations and – well – just marzipan. However, the marzipan note is by no means over-dominant and sole, as is the case with a Disaronno for example. I can come to terms with it, even though the Adriatico will clearly be relevant to me for the mixing glass and shaker and no longer for the nosing glass.
Finish: Toasted almonds and some rose water.
Certainly I am not the most suitable reviewer for this product, that should have become clear. But still, I would like to make a flaming plea in this article. Namely, for a drink that is nothing less than fantastic with the Adriatico Amaretto: the Mezcal Jackson by Sean Lisik. This drink consists of Del Maguey Vida Mezcal, Adriatico Amaretto (in the original recipe Disaronno, which is really no comparison at all), coconut rum (here I used the Aluna) and 8 drops of Aromatic Bitters (in the original Bob’s Abbotts Bitters). So, a very simple and plain drink, but one that knows how to wow me every time with its totally unique and super exciting flavor composition. It also fits in any season.
Recipe “Mezcal Jackson” (by Sean Lisik):
1.5 cl Del Maguey Vida Mezcal
3 cl Adriatico Roasted Almonds Amaretto
3 cl Aluna Coconut Rum
8 drops of Aromatic Bitters
Preparation: Stir all ingredients in a mixing glass over ice until cold, then strain into glass filled with solid ice.
Garnish: three smoked almonds
Buying sources: At specialized retailers or online
*The fact that this product has been sent to me free of charge for editorial purposes does not – in any way – imply any influence on the content of this article or my rating. On the contrary, it is always an indispensable condition for me to be able to review without any external influence.