About Anise Liqueur

Serve in a Copita
Anise-Flavored Spirits can vary widely in style depending on the country of origin. They can be dry or very sweet, low or high proof, distilled from fermented aniseed or macerated in neutral spirit. In France, Anis (as produced by Pernod) is produced by distilling anise and a variety of other botanicals together. Pastis is macerated, rather than distilled, and contains fewer botanicals than Anis. In Italy, Sambucca is distilled from anise and botanicals, but is then heavily sweetened to make it a liqueur. Oil of fennel (also known as green anise) is frequently added to boost the aroma of the spirit. Greece has a drier, grappa-like liqueur called Ouzo, which is stylistically close to pastis.
Top Picks for Anise Liqueur
212086
Borghetti
Sambuca Liqueur
Clear silver color. Bright, sweet, spicy aromas of coated licorice candy and gingerbread muffin with a silky, vibrant, sour medium-to-full body and a warming, appealing, long finish. finish. A rich, thick and pure licorice treat.
94 points $26.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
211752
Herbsaint
Liqueur
Yellow color. Rich, spicy aromas of anise, turmeric tea, and curry powder with a silky, lively, sour medium-to-full body and a peppery, captivating, medium-long fennel finish. A pure and power anise liqueur.
93 points $34.99
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
208045
Ricard
Pastis de Marseille
Deep amber color. Rich aromas and flavors of anise, peppery spices, and caramel with a supple, lively, moderately sweet full body and a hot, endless finish with accents of hay, pepper, chalk, and earth. An intense anise liqueur with great purity and depth that will be a great digestif.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
205033
D’Aristi Xtabentún
Honey and Anise Liqueur
Pale emerald green color. Bright aroma and flavor of licorice with a syrupy sweet medium-to-full body and a long, pure anise and Good and Plenty candy finish. A great anise liqueur for sipping or mixing.
90 points $19.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
220489
di Amore
Sambuca Liqueur
Clear color. Aromas and flavors of rich black licorice, chocolate ganache, candy coated aniseed, and coriander with a syrupy, vibrant, very sweet fat body and a smooth, interesting, medium-length fennel, vanilla custard, and sassafras finish. A rich and weighty sambuca-style anise liqueur to serve after dinner.
88 points $13.99 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
219645
Royal
Sambucca
Brilliant slivery straw color. Herbal aromas of candied aniseed, oregano, and lemongrass with a syrupy, crisp, very sweet medium-full body and a peppery, interesting, medium-length dried orange peel and cinnamon finish. A lingering anise liqueur to add intrigue to cocktails, or as an after-dinner offering.
86 points $12 Best Buy
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab
211219
Spirit Hound Distillers
Colorado Sambuca
Medium brown color. Lively, curious aromas of singed fudge cake, roasted nuts, dried fruits, and chocolate yogurt with a silky, vibrant, bittersweet medium-to-full body and a peppery, appealing, medium-long black licorice and pepper finish.
Date Tasted: in our Chicago tasting lab