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Monday, December 11, 2006

Curacao: fascinating cobble of contrasts

An interesting story on Curacao, the home port of the Freewinds:

WILLEMSTAD, Curacao — The fruit of the laraha orange tastes so bad even the island's wild goats don't bother it. I really don't blame them. But the peel — ah, that's a different matter.
Kathryn Clayton, Deseret Morning News
An example of highly detailed architecture of the building in Willemstad, Curacao. Structures must undergo frequent upkeep.
First, you use a wooden knife to cut the peel away and slice it into sections. It has to be wood; a metal knife would ruin things. You dry the peels in jute bags. Then, in a small copper still, you cook them until a clear liquid condenses. Color it, bottle it, seal it — everything's done by hand — and you've got the real thing, a liqueur that can only be made on Curacao, the original "Curacao of Curacao," so named to shame all pretenders.

Its old-fashioned bottles look better suited to sailors' grog: a long neck tapering up from a canteen-shaped bowl. They've gone around the world, these bottles have, each one an ambassador of this small Caribbean island, every sip an invitation: "Come and see us. Come and see us."

>> Continued

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