Strega is a yellow-coloured digestif liqueur made from 70 herbs and spices. Ingredients include mint, fennel and saffron, which gives it its colour.
It is distilled by steam in small stills, and fermented in oak vats.
It is made in Benevento, Italy. Two people know the recipe.
Serve Strega straight up, chilled or on the rocks.
Can also be drizzled over ice cream and fruit salads, or used as a flavouring in baking.
Strega was invented 1860 in Benevento, Campania, Italy, halfway between Rome and Naples by Giuseppe Alberti.
Giuseppe Alberti was born in San Felice a Cancello, a village between Naples and Caserta. He was a wine merchant. He reputedly got the recipe from a local monastery (not named, but if the story is true, it could be the Monastero di Santa Sofia,)
He sold it first as a Medical Elixer named after him, Alberti, but sales weren’t great. Then he decided to rename it to Strega, meaning “witch”, playing on the town’s history.
Since at least the Middle Ages, local legend has held that Benevento is a gathering place for witches around the world.
Radio commercials for Strega started in the 1930s.