Skip to main content

Friends, Romans, Drinkers: Meet Italicus, the New Award-Winning Spirit You Need To Try

italicus liqueur iritratti 056 color 9962 lpr
Hundreds, if not thousands, of spirits make their debut every year—but of those only a handful can call themselves award-winners. Italicus Rosolio di Bergamotto—Italicus, for short—is a new citrus liqueur that is spirits expert Giuseppe Gallo’s attempt at reviving Italy’s original aperitivo that can now count itself as part of that handful.

Only hitting US shores in the summer of 2017 (it debuted in London in 2016), Italicus is made from bergamot oranges that are sourced from a Protected area of Origin (IGP) in Calabria, as well as Sicilian citrons. The other ingredients in the spirit are also sourced from Italy.

Related Videos

The recipe of origin that Gallo tried to reproduce was from the 1800s for a drink called Rosolio di Torino, which has roots that stretch back all the way to the Renaissance noblewoman Catherine de Medici. The drink was eventually banned by the 19th Century King Vittorio Amedeo III (who preferred vermouth), but continued on in back rooms across Italy for generations.

Once Gallo had a recipe—lavender, yellow roses, Roman chamomile, melissa balm, and gentian were all used in the original recipe he found—Gallo began to fine tune it. Skip ahead ten years and Italicus was born.

Not set on creating a spirit that merely evokes pure Italianness, the award-winning bottle designed by Stranger & Stranger is also meant to bring to mind the land of the spirit’s origin. This seems only right, seeing as the name means “Italy.” Among the Italian notes, the bottle itself is based on a Roman column, the color comes from the waters of the Amalfi Coast (which you should be adding to your vacation plans if you haven’t already), and the stopper features the god of wine, Bacchus, posed like Da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man.


The only way to make it more Italian would be to put a bowl of pasta in one of Bacchus’ hands and a slice of pizza in the other. (Kidding.)

Italicus is 20% ABV and retails for around $45. It is only available in select markets so far, but with its success so far, the company says it hopes to expand. If you happen to be traveling to Europe, it is also available in multiple countries there.

Editors' Recommendations

Nashville has a hot new speakeasy and we’ve got their signature tequila recipes
'Pushing Daisies' will feature tequila drinks like margaritas
A Sunkissed Caballera from Pushing Daisies.

Although the origins of the infamous tequila, lime juice, and orange liqueur concoction are vast and clouded in legend, the margarita’s allure is irresistible. Wherever the drink arrives, a good time is likely to follow. Now the Mexican daisy will be blooming amidst the bustle of Nashville’s iconic Upper Broadway district.

Following an epic transcendent architectural and epicurean experience opened at the Nashville hotspot The Twelve Thirty Club in 2021, prolific restaurant innovator Sam Fox is now preparing to bring his very first bar concept to the Music City. Named after the Spanish word for 'margarita,' Pushing Daisies will open as an “underground” margarita bar debuting later in 2022.

Read more
5 incredible tequila recipes you’ve definitely never heard of
Have you ever heard of these tequila drinks and applications?
Corralejo Tequila Tropical being mixed with.

Tequila is on fire right now. Better still, the agave spirit is a lot more versatile than you might think. Sure, we've all heard of and even mixed up a few Margaritas or Palomas. But what of lesser-known applications, like cocktails kissed with bittersweet amari or salsas for dipping?

With several distinctive styles, from blanco to reposado, tequila's uses are many. The lightest versions can perfectly accent an unbelievably refreshing batch of Ranch Water. Darker, aged versions can be used to cook with or join unexpected ingredients in your cocktail shaker. Want some proof? Check out some great, lesser-known tequila recipes below.

Read more
Joven tequila: This new blend will make you rethink your stance on young tequila
This new tequila will delight your palate
A couple of salted tequila shots.

The drinks industry changes on a dime, with new sub-categories branching out from longstanding categories. That's certainly the case for tequila, which is currently making room for a new style type in its ranks. It's called joven tequila and it resides somewhere between a blanco and a reposado.

Lately, we've seen a rise in everything from wine-influenced tequila to fellow agave spirits, like mezcal. With joven, which is just emerging, we're seeing a different spin on some of the lighter, or younger, tequilas. It's a blended product that's beginning to turn heads both as a sipper on its own and as an able mixer.

Read more