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Dec 31, 2010 10:42 AM

Nocino- Has anyone tried making walnut liquor?

A friend of mine was traveling in Eastern Europe and told me about homemade walnut liquor he enjoyed. A little research and some walnuts yielded a product which is currently maturing. I used the following recipe as a guide, omitting some spices and a large % of sugar. Did not want syrup. I seems to be traditional to the Italians and French among others. Has anyone else tried doing this?

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  1. Yes! I made a HUGE batch two years ago. It takes several years to really be delicious. My recipe looks similar to yours. I don't have access to my recipe right now to compare. It *is* like syrup though. I like it over ice cream, but I am very sensitive to sweet things and cannot drink them. I can only handle a tiny bit of this stuff at a time -but it really is unique.

    1. I haven't made nocino specifically (it looks intriguing by the way), but an Italian friend was happy to show me how he does things like lemoncello and mandarino. With a bumper crop of homemade grappa, he'd infuse the booze with lemon or mandarin peel.
      Not having my own grappa, I'd use store bought, 94% alcohol, steep the peel for a month or so, then double the volume with water and add simple syrup to taste.
      Interesting results sometimes great, sometimes not ;-/)
      My friend said when returning to Italy one summer, he and a buddy would try infusing grappa with whatever they thought of. One of his favorites was fresh thyme.
      I gotta try the walnuts.

      1. Getting fresh nuts is the trick, I used them from a wild tree that was a naturalized English or Persian walnut. Never tried a Black for nuts. All types must be harvested while still tender, approx end of june. I only used lemon rind and vanilla bean to flavor, the cloves and cinnamon seem too fragrant.

        1. If you do a search on this board you will find some pretty extensive discussions on making nocino.

          1. Here's a discussion that has been going on for several years:


            I've got a batch that I started in June using Curmudgeon's recipe. I think it only really gets good after a couple years.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Junie D

              Thanks for the link. I followed a more basic recipe with a few variations. The sparkling wine addition does not appeal to me, actually it sounds bizarre, like a punch bowl at a college party, I am eager to try my bottle at the 1 year mark. I will keep everyone posted.

              1. re: CCSPRINGS

                Don't be put off by the sparkling wine. Of course it goes flat almost immediately. It just adds a touch of acidity which is a nice counterpoint to the bitter walnuts and sugar.