Move aside, Mai Tai. The tropical drink's got some competition with the Kon-Tiki Swizzle, a contemporary tiki creation that boasts some surprising ingredients, from Campari to coconut water. For this edition of Happiest Hour, Morgan Schick, bar manager of San Francisco's Trick Dog and partner at Jupiter Olympus, shows us how to swizzle our way to Summer refreshment. Watch the video to get inspired, then see the recipe.
In honor of National Aperitif Day (today, May 16), we'll be whetting our appetites with a light and refreshing predinner drink, and with these six enticing aperitif recipes, you can (and should) follow suit. From a bold and boisterous negroni to a delicate sparkling grapefruit and Lillet concoction, these easy-to-create cocktails are more than worth adding to your bartending repertoire.
As the weather warms, turn to a classic Italian aperitif, the Bicyclette, as your go-to cocktail. This orange-hued drink is both bracing and slightly bitter, which makes it perfect for whetting appetites before bar snacks or dinner. The best part? All you really need is three ingredients that you probably already have at home. Keep watching to learn how to make this picnic-perfect tipple.
This year, serve a classic cocktail that'll whet your guests' appetites before the next big feast. For a drink that'll truly kick-start the appetite, we recommend the bitter Italian drink known as the Negroni — and a two-ingredient appetizer to go along with it. Though this cocktail (which was purportedly invented by a Florentine count!) isn't for the faint of heart, we'd argue that once you fall for it, there's no going back. Watch our latest episode of Happiest Hour for an easy drink (and bite) to add a punch to this holiday's entertaining.
Penélope Cruz has officially made her debut in Campari's 2013 "Kiss Superstition Goodbye" calendar. The Italian spirits brand released 13 images from the limited-edition annual yesterday, all of which feature the Oscar-winning actress participating in superstitious acts like breaking mirrors, walking under ladders, opening umbrellas indoors, and more. Penélope was announced as the calendar's star back in August, and she got to work shooting the then-secret theme in Milan. She recently told Elle magazine that posing for the infamous calendar was like "saying goodbye to fear."
Penélope returned to Italy last week to promote her latest film, Twice Born. She was also on hand to help husband Javier Bardem celebrate the release of Skyfall while he did press for the Bond movie in Paris. Penélope added even more to her workload with news that she's the new face of Spanish leather goods brand Loews, which comes out next week.
Until recently, I assumed that Campari and its slightly milder cousin Aperol were love-it-or-hate-it aperitifs. But after cautiously trying a sip (and then another) of an expertly mixed Negroni while out to dinner one night, I discovered that, like many of the finer things in life, these bittersweet spirits are an acquired taste.
Since then, I've been sipping, swirling, and nibbling on everything and anything Italian, bittersweet, and glowingly bright red-orange. But tempted as I may be by riffs on the classic, I keep coming back to my first love: the negroni. Complex and with a heady perfume, this classic cocktail somehow seems appropriate year-round. Its bitterness helps to refresh the palate between bites of fatty braised meats come Fall and Winter, and when temperatures rise, it acts as internal air conditioning. A word of caution: this beverage is 100 percent alcohol, so pace yourself, lest you feel 100 percent awful come the next morning.
If you can't locate, say, white peaches, yuzu, or blood oranges in your area, this product is truly the next best thing. Unlike most other cocktail blends out there, these purées are extracted from fresh fruit and flash-frozen to preserve freshness.
At a recent tasting, this cocktail — an eclectic recipe of tequila, apple brandy, and Campari with passionfruit, pomegranate, and blood orange purée — was so enjoyable that I asked the company for the recipe. Here it is.
The bicyclette, a favorite of famed chef Fergus Henderson, is easy on the stomach, but boozy enough to lift the mood on the damper known as daytime tax filing. My mind was busy filling out those 1040s, but my inner spirit was channeling the drink's native Italy. For the no-recipe recipe, keep on reading.
My favorite refreshment? A Sicilian cooler, served straight from the skilled hand of San Francisco bartender Jackie Patterson. With a reverent nod to Italy, she played up the naturally floral, piquant, and slightly bitter flavors of blood oranges with Solerno, Campari, and lemon juice. For a sip that'll transport you to the streets of Palermo, read more.