Wednesday, May 1, 2013

The Black Manhattan

For those of you who enjoy a bitter/boozy cocktail at times, like me, you'll find this intriguing.

A Manhattan made with an amaro in place of the vermouth.

An amaro is a bitter Italian digestif (Averna, Cynar, Fernet). Quoting from this Food and Wine article about them:

"Amaro is traditionally made by infusing grape brandy with a (usually secret) mix of herbs, flowers, aromatic bark, citrus peel and spices—a blend that can include anything from cardamom to elderberry flowers. Then it's sweetened with sugar syrup and aged, sometimes for years. It's silky, like a liqueur; bitter and sweet in varying degrees; aromatically complex; and, as far as I'm concerned, both delicious and fascinating."

Traditionally, they're served neat, maybe with ice, at the end of a meal. But they're fun in cocktails, too.  As I discovered when hubs and I stopped into a local bar for a celebratory drink. DH asked for a Manhattan, and we got into a discussion of Manhattans, and the bartender trotted this out: bourbon, Averna, and angostura bitters.

So I may have found another way to utilize my home supply of amari. I'm also going to try a rye version, with Cardamaro.

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