21 February 2010

Campari, Another Bitter Italian Favorite

Disney fans are familiar with the ever-so-popular Beverly at Club Cool. Not because it taste oh so good but because of it's incredible bitterness from the quinine (also used in tonic water). This is not the only bitter drink that the Italians seem to have a fondness for. Campari, a aperitif marked by bitterness and bright red color. Its recipe has remained a secret since Gaspare Campari invented it in 1867, only a few employees in Milan know the ingredients.

The bright red color of Campari used to come from crushing the body shell of a small beetle but now is created chemically. Campari hasn't disclosed what ingredient leads to its bitter flavor but it's most likely from either cinchona (quinine) or bitter orange peel.

It really is bitter but I do recommend giving it a taste if you haven't before. It starts out very bitter but it ends with a nice sweetness.

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