- Mount Gay Black Barrel Rum 750ml
Cordials: From Monks to Mixologists
A cocktail is only as good as its individual ingredients. Let Groupon give you a cordial introduction to one of the sweeter tools of the bartending trade.
Ask for a cordial in different parts of the world and your experience may vary wildly. In Britain, you’ll enjoy a sweet, often fruity beverage. In the United States, you’ll get a similarly sweet concoction—as long as you’re of age. Unlike the British, Americans generally use the word cordial interchangeably with liqueur, which refers to a spirit such as gin or rum that has been infused, flavored, or distilled with botanical ingredients (most often fruit or nuts) and sweetened. Although they may be mixed into cocktails, cordials such as amaretto (flavored with almonds and apricot pits) and limoncello (flavored with lemons) are traditionally sipped at room temperature out of small glasses as an after-dinner digestif.
Many liqueurs were first designed in 15th-century European monasteries, where the monks used them as medicines to reinvigorate the heart. Though no longer considered remedies for serious illnesses, many of the recipes still exist today. The French, for example, have brewed chartreuse continuously since the early 17th century, working from a long-guarded recipe that calls for 130 ingredients, and frangelico—a hazelnut-flavored liqueur—pays homage to its 300-year-old monastic roots with a monk-shaped bottle.