Friday Liquor Spotlight #8: Averna!


Happy Friday, everyone!

So, in yesterday’s Throwback Thursday Classic Cocktail post, we promised you that we would be going in-depth on a specific liqueur in today’s liquor spotlight, and if we are one thing (we are many things), we are people who occasionally live up to promises that we make to others…

And so, here we are. Now come inside and let us tell you about the delicious wonderment that is Averna! 

Here is a bit of deep, dark truth for you: we have a propensity to be stuck in our ways. We like what we like, and often go by the motto of “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” when it comes to food and drinks. But sometimes, SOMETIMES we are introduced to a new product that we fall in love with so hard and so fast that we are forced to go against the grain and welcome something new into our world.

That is what happened to us with the delectable Averna.


We were introduced to this liqueur earlier this week, and it has already jumped to the top of our List of Things We Love.

Averna is a relatively high-proof (29%) Italian liqueur in the amaro family, which means it is actually a bitter. A grand bitter, to be exact. Unlike their cousins the petite bitters, grand bitters are far less concentrated and far more palatable, meaning you can use them as an accent in a cocktail, or even drink them on their own as a digestif. Other grand bitters you may have come across without even knowing it are liqueurs like Aperol, Campari, and Fernet Branca. They all share a certain level of bitter herbal flavor, but the degree of sharp bitterness varies with each specific liqueur.

Of this category, Averna has become our instant favorite. Although it has a distinctive herbal flavor with some bitter tones, it also contains subtle notes of dark chocolate, caramel, citrus, and anise that make it truly unique and singularly delicious.

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Averna was originally created in Sicily in 1868, and was named after its inventor, Salvatore Averna.

It is now distributed around the world, and relatively easy to come by in the U.S. Most large liquor chains stock it–we found ours at BevMo. A 750 ml bottle will run you about $30, but trust us when we say that it is worth it.

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We have been going to town on this stuff all week, and can’t wait to start using it in even more of our drinks. So get ready, everyone. The Averna takeover is upon you.

You should also make sure to check out the Averna USA website, they do a great job aggregating recipes for great drinks using their product. In fact, we need to wrap this thing up so we can get over to our bar to whip some of these puppies up!


To our readers in the U.S., have a fun, relaxing, and safe Memorial Day weekend! To our international readers: have a fun, relaxing, and safe Regular Weekend! We want to hear about the cocktail shenanigans you are getting up to, so make sure to comment here, send us a tweet @womanatthebar or find us on instagram @womanatthebar!

Until next time! 


2 thoughts on “Friday Liquor Spotlight #8: Averna!

  1. I grew up in a home with a big dining room table that was always filled with food family and friends. At the the end of every meal the booze came out. Averna was my mothers after dinner drink. Yes, she was Italian, born and raised in Brindisi. Great memories of her sitting at the end of the table, smiling, sipping, and telling us all how good it was for digestion. I now keep my own bottle of Averna. Thanks for the walk down memory lane.

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