- In Italy it is possible to buy 95% alcohol from the supermarket at about 20 Euro for 2 litres. Its manufacture is controlled and taxed. This allows the ordinary person to make his or her own liqueurs such as the ubiquitous limoncello. The total cost of about 2 gallons (UK gallons) comes out at about 90 Euro. This pragmatic approach by the authorities could well be copied in other countries where controls are more rigorously enforced, and where taxes on alcohol are prohibitive, such as the UK. I have been nosing about Italy for about 50 years and never has anyone offered to sell me home made grappa or other alcoholic drinks. The Italians are, however, very generous and you will never go away empty handed. My baker gave me a couple of litres of his father's grappa, and I gave him a bottle of my rum. Looking at the economics of home distilling here, I sometimes wonder if it is worth the powder and shot. Then I have a slug of my plum brandy and know that it is. We have a fascinating hobby and our contacts in this group are world wide and we should be careful not to excite the powers that be by flogging our product on the side. I do urge caution when tempted to sell your product, if you get caught, you will pay dearly.
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