1 1/2 oz Amaro Nonino
1 barspoon Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur
2 dash Angostura Bitters
2 dash Regan's Orange Bitters
Stir with ice and strain into a cocktail coupe. Garnish with an orange twist.
For a follow up to the Garden Sun Swizzle, I asked bartender John Mayer if he had any new drink ideas. Sticking with an agave spirits theme, John proposed a cocktail that he felt was similar to a mezcal Martinez which used Amaro Nonino instead of vermouth. It sounded intriguing and John rarely fails with his agave-fu, so I gave it the thumbs up. The drink began with an orange oil and mezcal aroma. The Amaro Nonino contributed a rich caramel flavor to the sip where it mingled with the agave notes. On the swallow, the mezcal's smoke followed by Maraschino then the bitters rounded out the drink. I was quite impressed at how the sweetness and richness of the Amaro Nonino did a good job beating back the mezcal's intensity.
Post note: John wrote me that the drink now appears on the Craigie on Main menu as the Des Esseintes. John explains:
I thought I'd follow up and mention that this cocktail is now on our list at Craigie; named the "Des Esseintes" after the eccentric and reclusive main/solo character of Joris-Karl Huysmans 1884 work, "A Rebours" (translated "Against the Grain").
There are many streams of this characters conscience that resonate with me; notably his affinity for the color orange and his description of his home bar as a "mouth organ", pulling individual stops to let certain liquors play their part in his drunken symphony.