Orange Ratafia Recipe

Ratafia orange recipe

Orange Ratafia

By Jan Zanoni
Published: January 24,2012

Ratafia is a liqueur, flavored with bitter almond or citrus peel, herbs and spices. This sweet aperitif owes its name to an old world drink that was used to toast the “ratification” of a treaty in 15th century Europe. Common in the Mediterranean region of France, Spain and Italy, often made by villagers, the ingredients changing with local indigenous fruits and herbs. Traditionally ratafia can be made with brandy or clear distilled spirits. I use Tuzemak, a local Czech spirit, and my own house wine, however any wine and domestic brandy with a smooth finish could be used.

Orange Ratafia Recipe


Zest of 8 oranges

1 1/4 cupsWhite sugar

4 cinnamon sticks

2 tablespoons coriander seeds

1 litre Brandy

2 (750 ml) bottleswhite wine


Wash and dry oranges. Using a vegetable peeler, remove the zest from the oranges being careful to leave behind the bitter white pith.
Combine the orange zest, sugar, cinnamon sticks and coriander seeds with the brandy in a large jar with a tight lid. Cover the jar and let steep for 2 months in a cool, dark place. From time to time stir the content of the jar.

After 2 months strain the liquid through a fine cloth or coffee filter into a clean jar. Allow the liquid to stand undisturbed for a few days until all the sediment collects at the bottom of the jar and the liquid is clear. Siphon the liquid into a clean jar. Add 2 bottle of white wine. Pour the finished ratafia into clean dry bottles, cork and let sit for another 2 months before serving.

Prep time: 30 min
Fermentation time: 4 months
Total time: 4 months
Yield: 2 1/2 quarts (2 1/2 litres)

Serving size: 3 ounces
Calories per serving: 164
Carbohydrates per serving: 18 g

Homemade Coffee Liqueur

Brandied Fruit Starter