Lovely if slightly odd – just the way we like them.
Note: In business since 1896, Senior has a unique distinction of being the only company to use the appellation of genuine, original, or authentic in describing its Curacaos as this may only be used if the Laraha golden oranges of the island of Curacao is used in production. Indeed I understand they own the only groves of these oranges in the world. These oranges were brought to the island in the early 1500s.
Of interest to the botanists out there these were Spanish Valencia Oranges that because of the vastly different climate and soil became a small, bitter, and for the most part inedible orange. At some point, someone discovered the wonderful aroma of the dried peel and started using the orange for something other than livestock fodder.In contrast to a number of other producers who take a industrial scale and approach to production of Curacao (and by using grain alcohol and artificial flavors create a product suited for orange cough syrup than a liqueur.)
Senior takes an artisinal approach where every step is carefully considered- from using a wooden knife to peel the orange rather than a steel one (which would stain the peels and introduce off-flavors) to the careful drying and then maceration of the peels before distillation to the hand bottling and labeling. Seniors products are proof that slow food techniques are as applicable to the spirit trade as it it to food.Speed and quantity are the enemies of good taste. This is a liqueur produced by blending rumraisin and curacao.The company produces a range of products including the world’s only genuine Curacao, a Chocolate and Curacao, and Koffi Korsow, a coffee liqueur.
First Impression: Wonderful full deep smell of very unique orange and some floral/perfume notes of orange blossom, with a whisper of cognac notes.
Appearance: Clear as glass and a bright gold orange in appearance, looks like a puddle of amber. Amazing body. On swirling, leaves a oily even coat on the glass with few legs developing.
Taste: Wonderfully viscous, almost like tree sap, orange, flowers (roses?), cinnamon, touch of crystalline ginger,cloves, rum/molasses notes and a concentrated raisin presence. Reminds me of a ice wine or a Barsac – almost like a hyper concentrated Sauterne with orange flavoring. A long pleasant finish with almost no alcohol presence just a mild warming.
Drinks: We tried it in a number of drinks. A very delicious and unique flavor profile that add some very good good elements. I think it holds a lot of promise and could be a very interesting ingredient for some new cocktails.
Bottle: Round/pocket watch flask shaped bottle- thin neck to round shoulder to flattened body with a textured surface that makes it look and feel like an orange skin. Trademark tree embossed into neck,nice cork stopper (not some god awful screw cap that gets stuck – which happens a lot with liqueurs) Artwork seems almost turn-of-the-century and quite attractive. Hand bottled and labeled.
Final Thoughts: Wonderfully done, if a little idiosyncratic. I don’t know of many cocktails calling for this liqueur, conversely I think because of this it would be a great item to experiment with and could lead to some very good and totally new drinks. Bartenders and cocktailians take note.
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