October 19, 2012

What I’m Drinking: Elisir di Salvia

This is quite a continental moment here on the Spiked Punch. First, tonight, like I usually do on the continent, I ate too much. Then, to combat my over-indulging, I had a healthy dose of Elisir di Salvia, a digestif I made from a recipe taken out of a simply-named book, Tisane, Liquori and Grappe. I have no idea who it’s by, but it’s from the Demera Company and is Italian (which means I translated the recipe. Yeah, I do everything for you. But you deserve it). I picked it up in a little tucked away bookstore in Sansepolcro’s historic center, called Arca Dei Libri. Nice place, really. Only blocks from the can’t-miss-it restaurant Fiorintino. Anywho, Elisir di Salvia is a curious mix of stuff, and the taste reflects it: herb and spice sweetness at the beginning, mellowing Marsala middle, totally different backend flavor and kick. At first, I wasn’t sold, but now I think it’s a weird kind of genius drink. And yes, I felt better after having it after eating too much. Oh, when in the jar cooling its heels, it looks like this:

Elisir di Salvia

1 liter Marsala

1 cup fresh sage leaves

1 orange rind

2 cups high proof vodka or grain alcohol

1/2 cup warm water

1.6 cups sugar

1. Add the Marsala, sage, and orange to an airtight glass container airtight. Let sit for 10 days to two weeks. Shake at least once a day.

2. Dissolve the sugar in the water to make a syrup, let cool, and then add it and the vodka.

3. After 24 hours of rest (or a week, if you’re lazy like me), filter and transfer to a glass bottle. Take 1 shot from the liqueur in all cases of difficult digestion.

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