I came across a bottle of Strega in a local liquor store recently and was intrigued. [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strega_(liqueur)]
Do you use it? How? Is it comparable to Lillet or Dolin Blanc, or is the flavor profile funkier, more akin to Chartreuse yellow or...?
So far, this is the first cocktail recipe I've seen mention it: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/20...
Should I buy a bottle?
To my taste, it is most similar to Yellow Chartreuse. I agree with DSP that it is not an essential. It is fun to play with. Like Chartreuse and Maraschino (and many others), it can dominate as DSP says. There are a handful of recipes that use Strega in Kindred Cocktails.
One thing going for it: It's a helluva lot cheaper than Yellow Chartreuse. That said, when my bottle is empty, I don't envision replacing it anytime soon.
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After reading this last night I had a couple of sips of both Yellow Chartreuse and Strega, side by side. While I agree that there is some similarity they are definitely not substitutes for one another (or put a better way, you won't be able to sub Strega for the Chartreuse). Strega, to my taste, is significantly drier, not nearly as smooth, and much sparser with regard to depth of flavor as compared to the rich, lush Yellow Chartreuse. I was reminded again why I rarely open my bottle of Strega, but reach for the Chartreuse on a fairly regular basis.
It is not comparable to any other liqueur in my collection. It's saffron flavored and, like the spice, tends to dominate very quickly. And generally not in a very good way, in my opinion. Personally, I'd pass unless you're already stocked with every other liqueur you're interested in.