One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Originally: any of various proprietary drinks (rare). In later use: specifically a type of Italian vermouth; a drink of this. [A trademark in the United Kingdom.]
Early 20th century; earliest use found in The Trade Marks Journal. Apparently from the Italian surname Riccadonna. The use specifically denoting a variety of vermouth apparently reflects the surname of Ottavio Riccadonna, who produced vermouth under this name from 1921.
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