Tuscan Spice

If you find yourself in the Park City, Utah, vicinity in July, think about attending the Park City Wine and Food Classic. It’s a seriously good festival, with events lasting days, from talks and treks to tastings. The three main tasting events span three days, with each event at a fantastic venue.

My husband and I have been five different years, and we’ve always thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. The wines are always good, and the tastings include sherry and port, champagne, as well as the harder stuff. There’s also beer.

The food is prepared by the local chefs, and when you consider how popular Park City is to tourists, you know it’s going to be impressive. This man made mini cotton candy!


For me, it’s the combination of being outside at 7,000 feet in the mountains among pine trees, and the nostalgia from having lived in Park City many years ago. Even if it’s 80 degrees outside, the heat is dry and the wind is always cool. Here is a view of the quaint town of Park City from an upstairs venue in town during the “stroll” of Park City.


This man is making cherry sorbet using dry ice and black cherry-flavored vodka. The view from this hotel, which is near Deer Valley, was spectacular.


So there is a purpose to this post. While attending the Park City Food and Wine Classic a few years ago, we came across a booth for Tuaca, and they were serving a specialty drink using the liqueur and mango nectar. They called it Tuscan Spice. I’m not sure if mangoes grow in Tuscany, but that didn’t stop me from trying it.

Tuaca is a vanilla citrus liqueur. It actually has origins in Italy, which perhaps explains the Tuscany part.

This drink is on the Tuaca website. It’s actually a shot, so I’ve also made it into a cocktail, which I personally prefer, below. See what you think!!!


Tuaca Tuscan Spice

1 ounce Tuaca
1 ounce mango nectar
1/2 ounce lemon juice
2 dashes cayenne pepper
Mango slice*

Shake all ingredients except the mango slice with ice. Strain into a shot glass. Garnish with the mango slice.

This photo shows all of the ingredients of the shot, before being shaken over ice. Look at that beautiful cayenne!


My version of Tuscan Spice

1 1/2 ounces Tuaca
3 ounces mango nectar
2 dashes cayenne pepper

Pour all of the ingredients over ice in a small old-fashioned glass. Stir and serve.
Ah much better!


* If you’ve never worked with a mango before, don’t worry, it’s very easy. Take a look at the mango and you’ll notice that they’re not elliptical – they’re oblong. There is a flatter side. It’s flatter because that’s where the large pit is at its thinnest.


To cut your mango, hold it upright in that position and slice to each side of the pit.


Then you can cut wedges from each mango half, peel them, and serve. You can also slice away around the pit – those pieces won’t be as pretty, but there’s still good fleshy mango there.

Just for your information, if you want mango chunks instead of slices, here’s what you do. Hold one of the mango halves open, flesh side up. Carefully cut slices into the mango like this:


Then, carefully turn the mango half inside out, like this:


Than carefully slice of the chunks at the base where they touch the peel. Voila!


If you like Tuaca but want something less fruity, try a mixture of Tuaca and Tia Maria or Kahlua. It’s very nice after dinner.

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