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TUACA Liquore Originale

TUACA Liquore Originale


By Robert Plotkin

TUACA is the stuff of legends. The formula for the liqueur originated sometime during the Italian Renaissance in the 16th Century. It was created as a gift for Lorenzo de Medici— the noble ruler of Florence and benefactor of art and architecture. Over the centuries the secret recipe was lost and the liqueur disappeared. Then in 1938, brothers-in-law Gaetano Tuoni and Giorgio Canepa from Tuscany uncovered the 500-year-old recipe and started producing the rich amber liqueur. American GIs serving in Italy during World War II developed a fondness for TUACA, which eventually led to it's being imported into the States shortly after the war.

TUACA is now made in Livorno Italy according to the original formula. It's comprised of vanilla, herbs, spices, citrus essence and cane sugar blended on a foundation of fine, barrel-aged brandy. However, the exact processes employed—according to the company—remain a closely guarded secret. The 100% natural liqueur is bottled at 35% alcohol by volume (70 proof).

This Italian gem is heavenly nectar. TUACA has a slightly viscous, medium-weight body and a wafting bouquet of citrus, vanilla and spice. The semisweet entry bathes the palate with vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and zesty orange flavors. The brandy makes its presence known on the long, dry and warm finish.

TUACA is indispensable behind the bar. The liqueur is a natural paired with coffee or other classic liqueurs like amaretto and Frangelico. It has also gained fame as a modifier in cocktails such as the Gimlet, Margarita or Lemon Drop. No other liqueur shares similar aromatics or palate to TUACA, which makes it a singular asset behind the bar.