Cherry chinotto cordial

Adam Liaw
Adam Liaw's cherry chinotto cordial.
Adam Liaw's cherry chinotto cordial. Photo: William Meppem

This bitter cordial is perfectly fine made just a day in advance, but it will benefit from a couple of weeks steeping in the syrup – no need to refrigerate. Bottles of this also make a great gift for family and friends.


• 800g pink grapefruit

• 2kg navel oranges

• 3 cups cherries

• 3 stalks rosemary

• 3 tbsp coriander seeds

• 3 sticks cinnamon

• 4 whole nutmegs

• 8 cups sugar

• 2 litres water


Slice the citrus into 1cm slices and arrange on 2-3 roasting trays lined with baking paper. Scatter over the cherries and then the herbs and spices. Roast at 220°C (200°C fan-forced) for 30-40 minutes, until the citrus becomes blackened at the edges.

Bring the sugar and water to a simmer, stirring until the sugar is completely dissolved, then allow to cool to room temperature. Transfer the contents of the roasting tray to a large preserving jar and pour over the sugar syrup. Allow to steep at least overnight but preferably for a week or two, then strain the syrup into bottles. Serve over ice, diluted with soda water.