A famous post-dinner alcoholic drink in Italy is limoncello, a shot made from alcohol, lemons, and sugar. It sounds simple, but it is a very extensive process. I had the opportunity to visit Sorrento, a small coastal town near Naples that is famous for their lemons, and see how the whole process works.limoncello

It all started at a lemongrove, where lemons were picked and sorted by hand. Some of the lemons were sent to be sold in markets, and some were reserved for making limoncello at Cassano 1875. Cassano 1875 is a local shop which specializes in limoncello but also sells a number of other lemony items such as oil, candy, and marmalade.  Here I learned about the limoncello-making process, which involves placing lemon peels into a container of pure alcohol and storing it for several days. The mixture is then strained and combined with a large amount of sugar to make it sweet.

After learning how limoncello is made, I got to taste it. I had tried limoncello in other parts of Italy, but the Sorrento limoncello was by far the most delicious.  Cassano 1875 is one of only 5 stores which is allowed to place a ”Limone di Sorrento” label on their products. This label indicates that the fruit is both cultivated and processed in the same area of the Sorrentine peninsula, and that no chemicals were used in production.limoncello

Sorrento is not only known for their lemon groves, but also for their fine craftsmanship. After tasting limoncello, the owner of Cassano 1875 showed me the local marina, where two men were crafting a wooden boat by hand.  If traveling to the Amalfi Coast, Pompeii, or Naples, I highly recommend stopping by and spending a day in Sorrento. The kindness of its people and its beautiful rocky cliffs cascading into the sea will make for a trip you will not forget. Did you know that we offer limoncello

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