An Italian Amaro Cocktail, very herbal and light.
We recently had an evening to catch up with some great friends and were sitting on the deck enjoying cocktails and trying to figure out how to make one of these evening happen in a far away location like Napa, when one of our friends mentioned they were taking a trip to Italy to celebrate a milestone anniversary. They asked what kind of cocktails they might run across while they are exploring Italy and while we knew they would run into classics like the Spritz or a Bellini and especially the Negroni, one thing we knew they would run across would be lots of cocktails that would include an amaro of some variety.
We had just received in a bottle of Amaro Lucano to play with, and with our friends upcoming Italian adventure as inspiration, we came up with the Lucky Lucano.
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What is an amaro? An amaro is a traditional Italian liqueur made from a mix of herbs, spices and botanical elements that usually were concocted for medicinal purposes, but these days are used as a digestif and served as an after dinner libation. Amaro Lucano is one of the most iconic Italian amaro liqueurs, the original recipe created way back in 1894 by Cavalier Pasquale Vena, a pasty chef who owned a biscuit factory.
Working in the kitchen, Vena created a blend of more than 30 herbs, hot infusing them into a spirit to create a liqueur that is richly flavored with a balanced citrus flavor and floral highlights.
Amaro Lucano soon became a favorite sipping digestif and quickly spread across the Italian peninsula, where the consistently fine flavors attracted the attention of the Royal House of Savoy. Being chosen by the ruling family of the Kingdom of Italy was a massive stroke of luck for the Vena family and Amaro Lucano, allowing the liqueur to go from a small provincial liqueur to a liqueur that was in demand in all of the finest drinking establishments across Italy.
With that luck in mind, we decided to name our cocktail the Lucky Lucano!
The Lucky Lucano combines Amaro Lucano, a robust bourbon and the juice of a ripe plum to make a bold boozy cocktail that is sure to delight fans of classic old fashioned cocktails. Amaro Lucano brings a bold slightly bitter flavor full of warm spice that pulls the sweetness of the plum and caramel flavors of the bourbon.
The dose of bourbon brings a strong boozy undertone that stands up to the boldly flavored Amaro Lucano.
A dash of fresh squeezed lemon adds a bright note that pulls the delicate citrus flavors that are a hallmark of Amaro Lucano. The fresh plum gives a sweet fruity freshness while bringing along some of the rich flavors of late summer. We hope you will enjoy the Lucky Lucano!
Like this recipe? Try these below, too!
Other Amaro Cocktails
Bourbon Campari Amaro Cocktail – Little Sugar Snaps
The Paper Plane – Honest Cooking
Bourbon Espresso Amaro Cocktail – Food52
Amaro Lucano Negroni – Garden Cocktails
Here Today Gone Amaro – Cocktail Courier
- 1 ripe plum
- 1.5 oz bourbon
- 1 oz Amaro Lucano
- .5 oz lemon
- .5 oz simple syrup
- Orange Peel for garnish
- Cut the plum into sections.
- Place into a shaker tin and muddle until fully macerated.
- Add ice to the shaker.
- Add bourbon, Amaro Lucano, lemon and simple syrup.
- Shake until fully chilled.
- Double strain into a chilled coupe glass.
- Garnish with an orange peel.
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