A Quick Guide to Parfait Amour Liqueur

By Timo Torner / Last updated on August 7, 2023

Parfait Amour is a purple liqueur often used in cocktails. The sweet, purple liqueur has an intense flowery flavor and is the star in many cocktails served at weddings or on Valentine's Day.
Parfait Amour liqueur

Parfait Amour is a French term for perfect love, and indeed this liqueur is closely associated with Valentine's cocktails. Its characteristic deep violet color and floral flavor profile makes it an excellent choice in flowery cocktails and one of the best tasting floral liqueurs.

One Valentine's or at weddings, the liqueur is one of the preferred cocktail ingredients of top bartenders around the globe. The elegant sweetness and flowery notes of the beautiful dark purple liqueur make it an excellent ingredient in love-themed drinks.

What is Parfait Amour liqueur?

Parfait Amour is a violet to purple-colored liqueur with a complex floral taste often used in floral cocktails. The origin of the French liqueur dates back to the 18th century but was almost forgotten during the 20th century. However, there's no clear definition of ingredients, nor is the flavor profile further specified.

Today, the liqueur is predominantly produced in Europe. -In France and the Netherlands, to be precise. Each brand producing Parfait Amour has its secret recipe with a different base and flavoring elements.

All different versions of this liqueur share a similar yet distinct floral flavor profile and the iconic deep violet color. Depending on the brand and production method, the ABV of Parfait Amour ranges between 24% and 30% or 48 to 60 proof.

What is Parfait Amour made from?

Although all Parfait Amour and Parfait Amour brands look the same, each producer uses their base and combination of flavoring ingredients. The flavorings in Parfait Amour may include:

  • Almonds
  • Coriander seeds 
  • Lavender
  • Lemon (peel)
  • Orange (peel)
  • Orange blossom
  • Rose petals
  • Vanilla
  • Violet petals

Below you can find a summary of the ingredients for the most influential brands.

Ingredients in DeKuyper Parfait Amour

DeKuyper Parfait Amour

DeKuyper's take on the beautiful deep purple liqueur uses a spirit as a base. The liqueur is a blend of various distillates.

Vanilla distillations and citrus distillations are blended with a neutral base spirit and then flavored with lemons, coriander seeds, and violets.

Ingredients in Bols Parfait Amour liqueur

Bols Parfait Amour

The Dutch brand Bols claims to have invented the floral liqueur. Bols liqueurs have a long tradition and a rather large product range.

Their Parfait Amour recipe dates early 19th century and is based on Curacao orange liqueur and flavored with rose, vanilla, spices, and almonds.

Ingredients in Marie Brizard Parfait Amour

Marie Brizard Parfait Amour

The third product is coming from France. The base of this liqueur is distilled with fresh and sweet oranges from Spain.

The resulting distillate is then flavored with sweet oranges from Spain, orange blossoms, and infused with vanilla pods from Madagascar. According to the brand, a bit of food coloring allows for achieving the typical violet or mauve color.

Ingredients in Giffard Parfait Amour liqueur

Giffard Parfait Amour liqueur

The recipe of Giffard uses an old base recipe. Their take on the liqueur is flavored with violet petals, geranium, orange peel, and vanilla and made with the greatest care. The result is a sweet yet aromatic liqueur with a beautiful combination of floral flavors, spicy notes, and hints of citrus.

How does Parfait Amour taste

The nose of Parfait Amour is distinctively floral and sweet. On the palate, the sweet and very floral continues, it almost tastes like flower petals. John Wright from The Guardian describes the taste as "tasted like the perfume counter at Boots"

The flavor profile may contain hints of rose petals, violets, lavender, orange peel, almonds, and vanilla. However, the taste varies from product to product. 

Of course, you can enjoy Parfait Amour pure on ice, but the liqueur is ideal as a component in floral cocktails. On its own, the sweet and potent floral taste might be too overpowering.

The Difference between Parfait Amour and Creme de Violette

The dark violet or mauve color suggests that Parfait Amour and Crème de Violette could be the same. -But they're not.

Creme de Violette is more of a forerunner to liqueurs like Parfait Amour and the Creme Yvette. The latter two have a more complex flavor profile with notes of vanilla, citrus, and in rare cases, almonds.

Creme de Violette is more one-dimensional because it's based on violets only. Nevertheless, you can substitute Parfait Amour and Creme de Violette for one another.

Just keep in mind that the flavor profiles are not exactly the same and that, consequently, your cocktail will turn out a little different, too.

DIY: Step-by-Step Guide to Making Parfait Amour

If you don't want to buy a bottle of Parfait Amour liqueur, you can re-create the centuries-old liqueur flavor at home using just a handful of ingredients.


  • A handful of fragrant rose petals (any true rose with a delightful scent will do)
  • 250ml white rum or eau de vie
  • 100g raspberries
  • 75g sugar
  • 150g rosehips
  • 600ml water
  • 150g sugar

Step 1: Rose Petal Infusion

  1. Place the fragrant petals in a bowl and cover them with white rum or eau de vie, ensuring they are fully immersed.
  2. Cover the bowl and leave the mixture to infuse overnight. After a day the delicate taste of flower petals is infused in the now rose-colored rum.

Step 2: Raspberry Syrup

  1. Squeeze the raspberries through a sieve into a saucepan to extract the juice.
  2. Gently warm the raspberry juice in the saucepan and stir in the sugar until fully dissolved.

Step 3: Rosehip Syrup

  1. Boil the rosehips in water until they become soft and tender.
  2. Gently squeeze the softened rosehips with a potato masher to extract their essence.
  3. Lay a muslin cloth in a saucepan, pour the rosehip mixture into it, and gather the muslin at the edges, allowing it to drip over the pan.
  4. Simmer the liquid until it is reduced by at least half.
  5. Stir in the sugar until fully dissolved.

Step 4: Combining the Ingredients

  1. Remove the rose petals from the infused alcohol; the liquid will have turned a pleasant pink hue.
  2. Add your desired amount of raspberry syrup and rosehip syrup to the infused alcohol, adjusting to your taste preference. You may not need all the syrup made, but it's difficult to make smaller quantities.

Step 5: Bottling

  1. Pour the delightful Parfait Amour liqueur into clean, sterilized bottles.
  2. Seal the bottles tightly and store them in a cool, dark place to further develop the flavors.

Who invented Parfait Amour?

The history of the liqueur is murky. Although it's believed that the origin of Parfait Amour lies in France of the 18th century, the House of Bols claims to be the inventor of the purple, floral liqueur. 

Some sources even claim that the original version of Parfait Amour didn't include any flowery ingredients at all; No rose petals, no violets. Instead, they claim it was flavored with coriander seeds, cinnamon, essence of bitter almonds, and lemons.

Parfait Amour in cocktails

Now it's time for some examples of how to use Parfait Amour in cocktails.

Takumi's Aviation

Takumi's Aviation cocktail with Parfait Amour

This twist on the traditional Aviation cocktail is made of only four ingredients: Gin, Maraschino liqueur, Parfait Amour, and lemon juice.

Love Heart

Love Heart cocktail

The Love Heart is a prime example of a Valentine's cocktail made of Parfait Amour. All you need to make this pink drink is Vodka, Giffard Fraise de Bois, Parfait Amour, and Brut Champagne.

Purple Cosmo

Purple Cosmo

This purple version of a classic Cosmopolitan cocktail is a refreshing and fruity stirred cocktail. Besides Parfait Amour, you'll need some quality Vodka, cranberry juice, and fresh lemon juice.

Thistle (shot)

Thistle - layered shot with Scotch, parfait amour, creme de cacao

The Thistle is a popular drink commonly served as a layered shot. You make a Thistle - with Creme de cacao white and Scotch - by layering half an ounce of each ingredient in that order: white Creme de cacao, Parfait Amour, Scotch whisky.

This clear, purple, and golden shot is one of the prettiest shots you can have at weddings.

The best Parfait Amour liqueur brands

The floral liqueur is produced by a small, but selected group of brands. Besides Bols, there are at least three other brands we highly recommend trying. Here's our ranking of the best Parfait Amour bottles to try:

  • Bols Parfait Amour
  • Giffard Parfait Amour
  • Marie Blizzard Parfait Amour
  • DeKuyper Parfait Amour 

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