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Taste Test: Banks and Solander Distillery’s Limoncello

Named after two famous botanists that came to Australia aboard Captain Cook’s Endeavour, Banks and Solander Distillery has created a limoncello that salutes Italian traditions but that’s also uniquely Australian. Cincin!

About Banks And Solander Distillery

From their hand-made copper stills ‘Lizzie’ and ‘Lady Banks’, owner-distillers Ed and Marty Svehla have been crafting superb Aussie spirits since 2014.

Their flagship gin—Banks & Solander Signature Gin—is a full-bodied, citrus and umami forward masterpiece (you can read our review of this gin here), and their other spirits are equally excellent.

And Banks and Solander Distillery’s Limoncello makes the perfect end to a meal, a sharp aperitivo with snacks or a delicious spritz on a hot afternoon.

About the Bottle

The idea of a spirit after dinner to help with digestion isn’t new. Italians have been enjoying digestivo for centuries, as have many other cultures.

A doctor friend of mine even told me recently that a ‘digestive spirit’ helps relax the pyloric sphincter—the muscle at the end of your stomach. So doctor’s orders: drink limoncello!

Key Botanicals

The beautiful lemon yellow colour of this spirit comes purely from fresh lemons in the distilling process and an old Italian family recipe.

And apart from locally foraged Botany Bay lemons—both their juice and rind—in the clean, neutral base spirit, Australian botanicals like lemon myrtle make this a truly Aussie spirit.

Tasting Notes

Lemony on the nose, but not overpoweringly zesty—more like cooked lemons or lemon pastry—this limoncello avoids the issue of smelling like dish-washing liquid that many limoncellos suffer.

There’s a savoury note that counters the sharp-sweet citron aroma nicely.

The sweet-savoury balance continues with the taste. Sourness from the lemon is countered by a savoury baseline and a bitterness helps the sweetness of residual sugars coat the palate without being overpowering.

The only thing missing from this to make it truly an Italian family recipe is double the 30.8% ABV. 60% limoncello? Now that’s amore!

Serving Suggestions

Obviously, serving Banks and Solander’s Limoncello chilled and neat after dinner is the go-to. But adding a splash of soda water—or even Prosecco as a sbagliato—turns it into a lovely spritz just right for summer.

It would be interesting to see how this limoncello works as an addition to a negroni—replacing part of the gin—or a margarita using Mount Uncle Distillery’s Dirt Road White Agave Spirit.


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