Sitting in the Bay of Naples, looking at Vesuvius, imagining the view of the Pliny family as they watched Pompeii and Herculaneum disappear under volcanic rock and mud is an amazing experience. The food we ate in Naples was outstanding, and we were reluctant to end our dining experiences. In Europe people understand enjoying dining at a leisurely pace, and they’re in now hurry to move you on. A great way to savour an extra half hour is to round off your meal with a cold glass of Limoncello.
Limoncello tastes of heaven when consumed on a hot evening, but it’s a fairly straightforward drink. Lemon zest is soaked in grain alcohol until the lemon oil infuses the booze. Sugar is added, lots of sugar. That’s it. Yet somehow, sitting on the Italian coast, the drink manages to include endless sunny days, the sun glinting off the sea, mahogany coloured youths on boats and wrinkled rich folk soaking up the sun on the Amalfi coast.
I hope the bottle in my fridge tastes as good on a rainy November night in the English Midlands when I most need a shot of sunshine.