You never know where you’ll find your next cherished recipe. Ed’s buddies, brothers he knew from high school and college, paid us a visit in Arizona one winter, a golf outing for residents of Pennsylvania and Ohio. They were fun house guests, and I would have said that before Mike jotted down his recipe for Cherry La La, a specialty for which he and his wife, Janice, are known. They’ve made it often enough over the years that Mike was able to write the recipe from memory as we sat around the our kitchen one evening. I got the feeling that their family and friends get to enjoy Cherry La La around the holidays every year. This cherry liqueur recipe is perfect for after-dinner sipping, and it makes enough to share with friends, so start saving pretty bottles. You know, maple syrup bottles, fancy vinegar bottles, etc.
When I first mixed up a batch, it smelled by strong and boozy, whiskey and red wine fumes were overpowering. As the days go on, the smell become milder and more mellow. After three days, the flavors have blended and become delicious!
The flavor is very similar to Polish wiśniówka, which is simpler and more natural but takes longer than three days to age. I’ve never had them side-by-side to do a taste test, but just sipping one of these cherry liqueur recipes, I’d be hard pressed to identify which one I was sampling.
In just a few days, these ingredients become a smooth, delicious cherry liqueur
- One gallon red wine (Paisano works well)
- One quart cheap whiskey
- One pint cherry syrup
- One cup sugar
- One jar maraschino cherries (8 – 10 oz.)
- Combine all ingredients
- Cover, age 3 days or longer
- Stir daily until bottling