Food / Q&A

In the kitchen with Phil Mastroianni

Phil Mastroianni is the co-owner and founder of Fabrizia Spirits (fabriziaspirits.com), a Salem-based producer of all-natural limoncello that he launched in 2008 with his younger brother, Nick. Fabrizia Spirits has become a leading purveyor of limoncello in the United States and has since expanded its product line to include a variety of ready-to-drink cocktails, like its Italian margarita and Italian-style lemonade; multiple flavors of vodka sodas, like Sicilian lemon, blood orange and raspberry; and liqueurs, the newest of which is the Crema di Pistacchio. In November 2020 the Mastroiannis launched the Fabrizia Lemon Baking Co. (fabrizialemonbakingcompany.com, and on Facebook and Instagram @fabrizialemonbakingco), which now offers its own line of limoncello-infused baked goods including cookies, whoopie pies, biscotti, blondies, loaves and white chocolate-dipped truffles. Each item is baked fresh on site at Fabrizia’s Salem headquarters. Orders can be placed online and can be shipped anywhere in the country within three business days.

What is your must-have kitchen item?

The mixer at our bakery is hands down the No. 1 important tool, besides the oven, obviously.

What would you have for your last meal?

Spaghetti and meatballs with a fresh tomato sauce, made by my mother.

What is your favorite local restaurant?

The Copper Door. I love their service, and the quality of their food is amazing. Everything that they make is delicious. … I used to go to the one in Bedford a lot, but the Salem one that opened is right down the street from our facility, so it’s very convenient.

What celebrity would you like to see trying one of your baked products?

Giada De Laurentiis. If I had a wishlist of people, she would be on it. … I would send her our cookies and our limoncello loaf and I would love to get her thoughts on them.

What is your favorite baked product that you offer?

A warm limoncello cookie coming right out of the oven is still hands down my favorite item. … It’s also my kryptonite. … I had to cut myself off of them. I would find myself eating a cookie at 11 o’clock in the morning and then I wouldn’t eat lunch and I’d be hungry by the afternoon.

What is the biggest food trend in New Hampshire right now?

If I could foray a bit into the spirits world, I would definitely say the proliferation of the spritz. … I think you’re starting to see all kinds of restaurants start to offer them. Aperol kind of started it, but it’s bloomed into others as well.

What is your favorite thing to cook at home?

I like to make pizzas as often as my wife will let me, because it always makes a mess. I have a nearly three-year-old mother dough I’ve kept alive that I love to do homemade pizzas with.

Fabrizia limoncello scallops
From the kitchen of Phil Mastroianni of Fabrizia Spirits in Salem

1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon salt
1 pound scallops
½ cup Fabrizia limoncello
2 teaspoons unsalted butter
1 Tablespoon heavy cream

In a pan over medium-high heat, add the oil, garlic, lemon zest and salt and cook for less than a minute, stirring throughout. Add the scallops, cooking for about three to four minutes and flipping about halfway through. Remove the scallops from the pan and set aside. Carefully wipe out the pan and return to the stovetop. Add the limoncello and cook over medium-high heat until it is reduced by half. Remove from heat and whisk in the butter and cream. Pour over the previously cooked scallops.

Featured photo: Phil Mastroianni. Courtesy photo.

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