Random Appetites: Tuaca

Not only is it a fun word to say, it’s pretty tasty as well! (though the urge to go “tu-a-ca-ca-ca” a la Disturbed’s Down With the Sickness is nearly overwhelming)

Now, even though I’m no longer IN the hospitality industry I still figure I’ve been around enough (and watch enough Food Network) to have at least heard most things on the market. Imagine my curiosity when, while perusing the dessert options the other night at The Melting Pot, Todd and I came upon this flavor option that we’d never heard of! Since it was listed along with liqueurs like Chambord and Grand Marnier (among others) we figured that it was another liqueur, we just couldn’t figure out what flavor.

Internet to the rescue! Once home we did a little digging (very little, actually) and were able to find out exactly what Tuaca is (from their website):

Tuaca: a premium Italian liqueur with a hint of citrus and vanilla.

Later that weekend we were out shopping (well, I was shopping, Todd was being a very good sport and keeping me company for the most part–have I mentioned how good a sport he is about things like this?) and passed a liquor store on the way home so we decided to see if they had it. Surprisingly enough (because you never know how knowledgeable the random counter help will be) not only did they have it but the guy I asked knew exactly where it was in the store and had even tried it before so was able to give us some tips. Despite the citrus/vanilla press his opinion was that it had more of a caramel flavor, not very citrusy at all, and that just sipping it cold was a good way to go.

Now, I don’t really drink liquor straight so while on the website we’d seen some recipes and one (from the Tuaca Tenders section) seemed especially yummy to me: The Snowball which is made up of Tuaca, Coconut Rum and Pineapple Juice. After another stop (for juice and nibbles) we were on our way home to experiment.

Unfortunately that particular recipe was incomplete: there were no measurements, hence the experimentation. First I tried a 1:1 between the Tuaca and Coconut Rum and topping it off with the pineapple juice (over ice in a double old fashioned glass). This tasted more like a pina colada (which isn’t a bad thing, but I already know how those taste!) than anything else so the next night I gave it another shot (see, I’m not a total lush). This time you could taste something different. But that’s not quite right: when mixed, the Tuaca has less of an actual taste and more of a feeling–you could FEEL something else in the drink, that warmth that comes from it’s brandy base and a slight hint of something you can quite put your finger on, that’s the Tuaca!

Random’s Snow Ball

1.5 to 2 oz Tuaca
1 oz Coconut Rum
6 to 8 oz Pineapple Juice

Pour over a handful of ice in a lowball or double old fashioned and swirl gently.

And remember when I said I don’t drink liquor straight? Well, Tuaca is something I can actually sip on it’s own. It’s very nice and smooth and not bracing at all, thought I still do prefer it with mixers.

Enjoy!