Every now and then, I encounter a food or drink that is so unusual that I cant help but investigate. A few years back, while investigating absinthe, to be blogged on another day, I discovered this odd liquor called Liquor de Violette. As a warning, it is not the same as Crème de Violette. I am sure it is like wine though, with each recipe having their own nuances that appeals to different people. The difference between a cream/crème and liquor is sugar. When being crafted, once a certain percent of added sugar is reached, it is no longer liquor, is it considered a crème as in crème de cassis or cream de cacao.
Liquor de Violette is made from crushing the petals of violets and combining the juice with a spirit. The spirit can be brandy or other neutral spirit or a combination of several. It is found almost exclusively in France but I had difficulty finding it there as well. I have resorted to internet purchasing with success though some may be limited, by law, in the ability to procure it. (I use http://www.absintheonline.com/).
The purple, sometimes, pinkish liquor, in its virgin state, has an obvious floral flavor that is thick on the tongue and in viscosity. Once I tasted it, I became determined to create a more pleasant cocktail in which to enjoy it, as it was too sweet on its own. I could not allow the distinct, enjoyable flavor of a violet to go unattended. I spent an entire summer month mixing, chilling and heating: not a good option for the record!
What resulted was a sweet martini that was liquor sweet, not sugary sweet, with the strong flavor and aroma of Violet flowers with vanilla and a touch of citrus.
Fill a shaker with ice and add:
2 ounces Vanilla infused vodka
2 ounces Liqueur de Violette
A splash of Grand Marinier
Shake well & strain into a pre-chilled martini glass.
A summer breeze!