Galliano Liqueur or Liquore Galliano L’Autentico, to give it its full name, is a a sweet, herbal, Italian liqueur. It was created in 1896 in Livorno, Tuscany by Arturo Vaccari who discovered the Maraschi Brothers in Torino making the finest extracts of plants, herbs and spices. It is named after Giuseppe Galliano who was an Italian hero of the First Italo-Ethiopian War. As with most liqueurs the exact recipe used to make it is a trade secret, but it is a blend of some 30 herbs, plants, barks, roots, seeds and spices from around the Mediterranean. These include Mediterranean Anise, Musk Yarrow, Cinnamon, Peppermint, Juniper, Star Anise, Lavender and Vanilla. To make Galliano the pressings of the various plants (except the vanilla) are infused in alcohol which is then distilled, the vanilla is blended in, as is distilled water, sugar for sweetening and pure neutral alcohol to adjust the final bottling strength to 42.3% abv.
Arturo Vaccari chose the golden yellow colour as a marketing idea to reflect the journey that many Italians made to California to chase the 1890s Gold Rush of the Golden State. However, Galliano Liqueur become most famous in the 1970s when it was used as an ingredient in the classic Harvey Wallbanger cocktail, allegedly created by a surf dude called Harvey who, after lacing one too many of his Screwdrivers with Galliano, found himself banging into walls as he walked down his hallway. True or not? You decide. There are some more cocktail ideas at the Galliano website.