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Bénédictine
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Featured Spirits - Liqueurs

a picture of Benedictine
Dom Bénédictine
France
80 proof

Bénédictine is an herbal liqueur with a fantastic story. Legend has it, the recipe dates back to 1510 when a Bénédictine monk by the name of Dom Bernardo Vincelli, renowned for his herbal and alchemical knowledge, crafted a mysterious herbal elixir that quickly became famous throughout France. In 1789, during the French Revolution, the Bénédictine monks were forced to flee their abbey. One of the monks gave several of what they considered their most precious books to a member of the le Grande family, where they sat in a family library, largely ignored, for years.

Then, in 1863, quite by accident, Alexandre le Grande, who happened to be a wine merchant, stumbled across a book, written in gothic script, containing the recipe for Vincelli’s elixir. Le Grande studied it, eventually reproduced it and put it to market, naming it after the monks of its origin—Bénédictine!

As it turns out, most of that story was likely made up by le Grande in an effort to sell more of his liqueur, but to this day it is celebrated as gift from the Bénédictine monks. It is even produced in an extravagant palace in France called Palais Bénédictine.

Bénédictine has a decidedly herbal nose with lots of alcohol behind it. The flavor is sweet and spicy herbal with berry and citrus fruit undertones. Despite being a “liqueur,” Bénédictine is “spirit strength,” (80 proof) so it packs a punch! It is famous in the cocktail world for its use in classics like the Bobby Burns, Singapore Sling, Straits Sling, Vieux Carre Cocktail, Widow’s Kiss, Kentucky Colonel, Rainbow Pousse-Cafè and Savoy Hotel, to name a few.