Getting the measure of... Lanique Rose Petal Liqueur

"Secret recipe" the label says; "rose petal liqueur" Google Search reveals; "The coveted Attar of Rose from the East gives it its unique nose and taste" the Lanique website... clarifies?

It turns out that 'Attar of Rose' is a type of rose oil or fragrance or essence (depending on which search result you pick), and Lanique's website explains that this is the key ingredient from its own 200-year-old recipe.

It is created by steam-distilling thousands of rose petals to create the oil and somehow this makes it - honest to God - more expensive per kilogram than gold.

The old recipe, previously lost, has been reworked and rediscovered for this relaunched version of the drink which extends its reach beyond the original "kingdom of Prussia, the two Sicilies and the Austrian Empire". I know this because it is currently on my shelf and in my house and I've never even visited any of those places.

The resulting product really is unique though. It's an immediate attention-grabber; a fragrant liqueur that gives both lift and kick to any cocktail.

As such it's time to do a full review of Lanique Rose Petal Liqueur with the kind of amateurish investigation that only I and I alone am unqualified to carry out.

The review part

Tasting notes/flavours: Rose (obvs), raspberry, cherry... I promise I'm not just naming other red things I can think of. Quite famously reminiscent of Turkish Delight.

Best pretentious flavour metaphor I can come up with: It's an Impressionist's painting of a floral symphony, rendered effortlessly on Mother Nature's most beautiful liquid canvas, but for your mouth.

Worst pretentious flavour metaphor I can come up with: It takes you by the tongue and lures you into a field of roses with the promise of Turkish Delight.

Works well with: Almond, apple, apricot, cardamom, chocolate, lemon, saffron

Ideal garnish: Rose petals, obviously. This isn't hard.

Label design: A luxurious tapestry of crests and lettering that reflects Lanique's rich Eastern European history and esteem. Set against the bright red liquid inside, it's pretty gorge.

What does the bottle look like? It's a regal tower of a vessel, like a glass ambassador telling the rest of the bottles in your bar to straighten up with shoulders back.

Closest Farrow & Ball paint colour match: Blazer.

What was #1 in the charts when it launched? Bang Bang by Jessie J, Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj, which is thankfully a song that I have heard of.

Top result when you search for 'Lanique' in Giphy:

I don't know what I was expecting, but still.

Who would play it in a film about its life? Kate Winslet - a class act with as much ability to be fun as to have depth and complexity. Plus, she played Rose in that film Titanic, so....

What comes up if you search Spotify for 'Lanique'? Lanquidity by Sun Ra & His Arkestra. It sounds like what happens when Jazz feels troubled.

How essential is it? There really is nothing like it. Other floral liqueurs, like elderflower or violet, might be more prevalent, but there are different brands trying to perfect the same flavour. Lanique is a bonafide one-of-a-kind product - which makes it about as vital as you can get.


Harvey Nichols

The showcase cocktail that I made

1.5oz Saffron-infused Gin
1oz Lanique Rose Petal Liqueur
3/4oz Lemon Juice
1/4oz White Creme De Cacao

Method: Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into a coupe glass. Garnish with lots and lots of rose petals.
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Tags: Lanique, Liqueur

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