705. Curaçao’s Laraha

Not much has changed over the past 117 years (same age-old recipe, same copper still, same wooden knife) so I was particularly intrigued when Senior & Co revealed their new website and label today.

Comparing the two labels, it seems Senior & Co have decided to:

– Drop the ‘orange’ Laraha… in favor of a façade of Landhuis Chobolobo (home of Senior’s Curaçao liqueur since 1947)

– Emphasize “The Genuine” nature of their liqueur as in “The Genuine Curaçao Liqueur” (indicated by increased font size and title addition)

– Drop “Curaçao of Curaçao”, in favor of “Curaçao” (plain and simple)

– Add “Triple Sec” (surely to clarify that there’s no difference between Curaçao and Triple Sec)

Granted, one ingredient and one ingredient only, makes “The Genuine Curaçao Liqueur” truly worthy of ‘genuine’: our awesome Laraha.

So here are 8 things to know about our Laraha: 

1. Valencia orange transplanted by Spanish colonizers in the 1500s + Curaçao’s dry soil + sizzling equatorial sun = mutant bitter green ‘orange’. Perhaps our soil’s ‘F#%# You’ to colonization?!

2. Contrary to popular and predictable belief, our ‘orange’ is green, people, green.

3.  The Spanish considered the mutant ‘orange’ “inútil” (much like the rest of our island), so they left it unnamed. Even our goats, so tickled by bitterness, left our ‘orange’ untouched, free to grow wild.

4.  The Portuguese arrived in the mid-1600s and found our (by then) wild ‘orange’ and decided to name it “Laraha” (orange in Portuguese = “Laranja”). “Laraha” stuck in Papiamentu as well.

5.  The scientific world came to the conclusion that the Laraha only grows in Curaçao… so they baptized our Laraha “Citrus Aurantium Curassuviensis”, Latin for “Golden Citrus of Curaçao” (ours isn’t exactly ‘golden’, but we appreciate the rich accolade nonetheless)

6. In the mid-1900s, some yu’i Kòrsou discovered that sun-dried Laraha peels produce an explosion of aromatic, etheric oils. So some of our sophisticated alkies decided to experiment with the oil and developed (secret) family liqueur recipes (stay tuned for all the intrigue in a later post)

7. Even the father of Triple Sec, Edouard Cointreau of France, who visited Curaçao in the mid-1900s  came to appreciate the fragrance of the Laraha’s bitter dried peels, so much so that he decided to combine them with sweet oranges and make an aperitif.

8. Senior & Co. has been around since 1896 and is the only company in the world that uses authentic Laraha oil in Curaçao liqueur. If that’s not genuine, I don’t know what is.


Advertentie 2013

Curaçao is home to some and far to most, now you can buy Senior & Co.’s “Genuine Curaçao Liqueur” online:



Also: 716. The Multi-Cultural Spirit ‘Curaçao of Curaçao’

About 1000awesomethingsaboutcuracao

I'm Carolina Gomes-Casseres, the creator of 1000 Awesome Things About Curaçao. I live in Manhattan but sometimes miss my first awesome island. Thanks for visiting!


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    How long we can preserve this liqueur. Validity of consumption.

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