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Vino Amaro

Outside of the “big three” of wormwood, gentian, and quinine, herbalists worldwide have used many flavors as the backbones of aromatized wines. Many of these wines no longer exist, and many of those flavorings have moved into spirit-based amari and liqueurs. A few examples of “vino amaro,” or wine-based amaro, still exist, and use herbal flavors that are harmonious and familiar to traditional drinkers worldwide. Because of their wine base, these products have vinous texture and a depth of flavor that add a welcome breadth when used in mixed drinks.

    Pasubio

    Pasubio

    ItalyTrentino-Alto Adige 17.0% ABV

    17.0% ABV

    Pasubio is a true taste of the Dolomite Mountains in the Trentino region. On a base of rich aged wine you’ll find notes of blueberries, pine and smoke, together with bitter alpine herbs. It is rare among amari to feature mountain berries. The recipe from Giuseppe Cappelletti dates back to the early 20th century and is among the Erboristeria’s first amari. Traditionally enjoyed neat, typically at cellar temperature or chilled. Pasubio makes simple and delicious spritzes with tonic, soda, sparkling lemonade, or bitter lemon. Also pairs well in mixed drinks with bourbon, rye, or brandy. Full details

    Pasubio
    Pasubio
    Elisir Novasalus

    Elisir Novasalus

    ItalyTrentino-Alto Adige 16.0% ABV

    16.0% ABV

    Perhaps the most earnest of digestivi, Elisir Novasalus is revered in Alto Adige and regions beyond. Made by an Erboristeria (master of botanicals) and trader in wines, it combines in a six-month process the plants from the surrounding high alps (Alto Adige) with a dry Marsala and a unique tree sap of Sicily. The resulting amaro is bold, bitter and exceptionally complex, with layers upon layers of flavor. Famously comforting after a large meal. While not traditionally mixed, it is nicely followed by a small glass of sparkling wine. Unrivalled in its palate effect, it makes for a perfect finish to a meal. Full details

    Elisir Novasalus
    Elisir Novasalus
    Cardamaro Vino Amaro

    Cardamaro Vino Amaro

    ItalyPiemonte 17.0% ABV

    17.0% ABV

    Cardamaro is a longstanding product of what is today an 8th-generation winemaker in Canelli d’Asti. The primary flavors of Cardamaro are cardoon and blessed thistle, with gentle undertones of spice. The wine base provides a pleasing texture and allows for pairing with robust cheeses, soft or hard. Mix Cardamaro with cider or ginger ale, or use in place of vermouth for an earthier take on classic cocktails. Cardamaro can also be used in place of whiskey for subtle cocktails, such as with Dolin Rouge in the Lower Manhattan. Full details

    Cardamaro Vino Amaro
    Cardamaro Vino Amaro