There is a certain pure and poetic feeling when the fragrance of Centifolia roses takes over the garden. Giving all their strength to blossom in a full, “thousand-petal” bulb, they bloom only once a year, and for a brief period of time.
It's no wonder that diligent Dubrovnik ladies, with an almost motherly care, used to carefully collect each blossomed petal to capture a little bit of that enchantment for the rest of the year in rose liqueur, locally called “Rozolin”.
The essence of the rose is so powerful making the Rozolin recipe quite a simple one.
All you need are:
- Petals of 12 Centifolia roses
(old ladies would probably suggest you pick them while in full bloom, and in the early morning when it is said that the rose scent is the strongest and the oils most powerful)
- 1 kilogram of sugar
- 1 liter of grappa
- 40 days of sun
- Rip off the green chalice from the bottom of the blossom and put the petals in a glass jar (5 liter jar), add grappa and sugar, and place on the sun for 40 days.
- After 40 days when liqueur adopts the light golden colour strain the liqueur and pour it into bottles.
Releasing a little bit of that early summer feel for Christmas has always been a treat reserved for special guests, even from the times of the Republic when members of the Dubrovnik nobility presented rozolin as a special gift (or bribe) to clergymen and dignitaries visiting the city.
Cheers or Bon Appétit!
Deserving equally as much time in the spotlight, Rozolin is also the secret ingredient of Dubrovnik Crème caramel (Dubrovačka rozata), distinguishing it from its French counterpart - but this is something that you simply have to try to believe us!
Try this Dubrovnik classic at Hotel Bellevue Dubrovnik or head to Dubrovnik Green Market for your bottle of "Dubrovnik in the jar”.