- [Italy - Piemonte]
The Italian liqueur, Chinato, or as it's more formally known, Barolo Chinato, originated - not surprisingly, given its name - in the Piedmont region in northwestern Italy. Chinato (key’ not toe) is still produced in the Langhe area of the Piedmont, the same area where Nebbiolo grapes are grown for the production of the celebrated Barolo wines, Italy’s “king of wines.”
Barolo Chinato can trace its roots back to the late 19th century when, as tradition has it, a pharmacist from Serralunga d’Alba by the name of Giuseppe Cappellano, originated this liqueur by blending numerous herbs and spices with aged Barolo wine sweetened with a touch of sugar. As a pharmacist, he was interested in developing a medicinal remedy for a variety of ailments such as the flu, colds, headaches, upset stomach as well as baby colic. It quickly became a commercial success and found favor with all segments of Piemontese society, young and old, rich and poor. While commonly praised as a digestivo, an after-dinner liqueur to sooth the stomach and aid digestion, it is also used as an aperitif as well as a dessert wine to accompany certain rich desserts, especially those with a chocolate flavor.
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