A bunch of lemon groves
A bunch of lemon groves

Campania | Sorrento | Amalfi Coast

Sorrento | Campania

Sorrento and Amalfi coast is an extending land towards Capri and the rest of the Mediterranean, it lies immediately south of the Bay of Naples. It is a succession of cliffs that dominate the coastline, with a few small bays and coves that offer views of the enchanting deep blue sea.

This one, the Sorrentine Coast, is navigable only because of its sloping terraces where oranges, vines, olives and especially lemons are grown, all the way to the sea. Those lucky enough to pass by in spring will be pleasantly overwhelmed by their fragrance, while visitors can enjoy the divine consequences of the sour citrus fruits once picked all year round: after all, life has given lemons to this coast and people have made limoncello !

Don't miss the limoncello!

Among the important and fruitful traditions passed down from generation to generation in Sorrento, one in particular stands out: the recipe for limoncello, the world-famous liqueur made from an infusion of lemon peel and alcohol.

The story that comes closest to reality seems to be the one that attributes the birth of the delicious liqueur to the romantic island of Capri. Here, in the early 20th century, Mrs. Maria Antonia Farace tended her own fragrant lemon and orange orchard in the small boarding house she ran.

Years later, around 1988, Mrs. Maria's son, following in his mother's footsteps, opened a small artisan production of lemon-based liqueur, for which he registered the trademark. Thus was born the first Limoncello in history.

However, this version is followed by others who trace the birth of limoncello to Sorrento and Amalfi. In fact, some theories claim that at the beginning of the 20th century the great Sorrento families on the coast had a delicious lemon liqueur prepared for the illustrious guests who visited them.

According to other theories, the liqueur was already used in ancient times by peasants and fishermen against the morning cold, and its recipe originated in a monastery to please the monks.

Today it is widely used and made in other lemon rich areas of Italy. True limoncello, however, is made from the lemons of Sorrento and its Limoncello's peninsula, and the gradation should be between 30 and 35°, while its color is somewhere between yellow and a pale green, depending on how ripe the lemons are. It is served very cold, often after a meal.