Monday, June 13, 2011


1 oz Beefeater Gin
1 oz Aperol
1 oz Noilly Prat Dry Vermouth

Stir with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with an orange (or lemon) twist.

Two weekends ago, Andrea and I paid a visit to Ben Sandrof's Sunday Salon. One of the drinks on the menu was a No. 9 Park classic, the Contessa. The Contessa was created as part of a Flight of Heraldry that included the Negroni and another Negroni variation, the Patrician. Ben described how the Contessa was created by Courtney Bissonnette and John Gertsen, and Courtney later adopted the drink's name as her LUPEC pseudonym. Lauren Clarke of DrinkBoston wrote about the trilogy and attributed the drink to Ryan McGrale and John Gertsen, so perhaps all three of them had a hand in the drinks' creation.
That night, Ben had a guest bartender joining him, J.B. Bernstein of the Middlesex Lounge in Cambridge. The Contessa J.B. made for me had an orange oil and Aperol aroma. The sweet sip contained citrus notes from the Aperol and dry vermouth, and the swallow was a bit drier with gin, dry vermouth, and Aperol's bitter notes. The dry vermouth bolstered the syrupy Aperol by making it sharper; however, it was no where as intense as Campari even when softened by sweet vermouth in the classic Negroni.

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