Recently a friend of mine returned from a trip to Italy.  It seems everyone I know is off gallivanting around the globe.  It’s cool though, I’ve been to Epcot.  It’s pretty much the same thing.  Now before we start, yes, my friend is Italian.  I know.  All I can say is that it’s not his fault.  He was born that way.  Don’t hold it against him. 

What’s that?  Oh no, that’s fine.  It’s ok to look.  People do it all the time, how could you not?  But it’s not like I’m going to not address it.  It’s the elephant in the room.  I’d much rather get it out now, than have the rest of the evening be uncomfortable.

No, he’s very nice.  He tries his best.  He really is like most people in most respects.  He’s just, you know, Italian.  I cope with it the best I can.  I have a support structure in place.  Sure it’s difficult.  I’m not going to lie.  Do I wish my friend wasn’t Italian?  Of course I do.  Everything would just be easier.   But he is who he is, and sometimes you have to play the hand that life deals you.

Anyway, as I said, he just returned from a trip to Italy.  While he was there I’m sure he did his best to try and think of a gift for me that would encapsulate all of Italian culture.  The crumbling ruins standing as testament to a once great empire.  The conquering spirit of the mighty Romans.  The majestic landscapes.  The noodles.

So what captures all of that grandeur?  This delicately effeminate bottle of bright pink sipping liqueur.  It was cute.  It’s like when a child gives you a picture where the sky is colored green and the sun is purple and you know they’re really not that color but you’re not going to say anything because you are just so darned proud of them for trying.  You know how it is.

This is a bottle fragoli (love the bottle).  That’s strawberry cream liqueur (Is it cream or crème? Google translate said cream.).  It’s made by the Amalfi Citrus-Fruit Processing Co-operative.  I hope that sounds sexier in Italian.  They are a company on the Amalfi coast that mainly makes lemon liqueur.  “Amalfi” is Italian for “”We squeeze-a da lemons-a!”

Sure it’s the color of Pepto-Bismol, but what are you gonna do?  Strawberries and cream make that color.  Don’t let that color fool you though, this is good stuff.  It’s sweet and creamy and fruity (just like me).  As I said, it’s a sipping liqueur, but I shot it in one go.  Who’s got the time?  Do you have any idea how many Star Wars comic books there are?  But it still worked.  It’s got a nice kick to it, and with a 17% alcohol content, it might have you thinking as well as an Italian before too long. 

Next time I go to Italy I will have to pick some up.  If they don’t have any, I am going to be very disappointed.  But that’s ok because the line for Spaceship Earth is always short.

If you found yourself moved by this review, I encourage you to make a donation to your local Italian-American Club.  Every little bit helps.