Originals was born out of Alessandro's life long passion for liqueurs and curiosity for the "local". A company dedicated to discovering, supporting and importing to the US the craft, unique and often family-owned spirits of the world.
We operate under simple principles: we only import spirits we fall in love with, from people that are passionate about what they do and crafted in unique areas of the world. Our vetting process can take many months, so that we don't leave anything uncovered. We don't strive for large volumes. We seek the craft and/or unique, inevitably high quality. Definitely Originals.
Our spirits are discovered from tips by people like you, by nurturing relationships and, ultimately, through our journeys. Every journey reveals a number of characteristics developed out of local history and geographic conformation. We like to tell you what we find out, almost as if you traveled there in person.
We hope you enjoy our spirits and learning of our journeys as much as we do.
ABOUT THE FOUNDER
Born and raised in Sorrento, Italy, a place devoted to its rich soil and vital relationship to the sea, Alessandro Ercolano now lives in the greater NYC area with his wife, Mina, and son, Alessio. Alessandro’s education in engineering and career as a consultant offered him the unique opportunity to travel, live and explore different regions of the world.
After many sleepless nights, Alessandro decided to leave his corporate career and follow his passions.
"Dreams for our loved ones should not come as cautionary tales or words of encouragement, but through the example set by our actions...
Looking back at where I was born, I understand it in a deeper way now. If you haven't been there, it is difficult to imagine the intensity of colors and flavors. I left almost 20 years ago and every time I visit, I feel the same... like watching color TV for the first time.
Being born there is different though. You don't appreciate what you have when you are used to it. Your surroundings are just blurred backgrounds of daily routines. So, I wanted to live in a different country, with a woman of a different background. I was sure about it. Then, almost overnight, I realized I had to work really hard, and so I did. I earned Masters in Engineering and Business Administration and, with luck, joined a large American corporation. What followed was 13 years of non-stop work and travel across much of Europe and the US. I was very proud of my accomplishments - I felt like I had it all clear.
And then, almost overnight, things changed again. Alessio, our first son was born. My thinking changed, now constantly processing what values to transfer to him, dreaming about what person I wanted him to be. But soon I realized I first had to answer to what person I was, so that he could learn from me. I started measuring life on a different scale.
Everyone has a different answer to that question. Mine is to follow your passions but to also be responsible, remembering who you are and where you come from. So now I do know who I am. I know that my passion is to bring the intense colors and flavors I experience through my travels back to the country I very much love and live in. Spirits is what I know best. I grew up with liqueurs, they were an integral component of most dinners and important discussions. It wasn't until I began traveling that I fully understood my awareness and appreciation for them... thus Originals was born.
There are skills you learn and traits, perhaps more important, you develop in the pursuit of life. But passions push your life to places you wouldn't imagine to go."