Give 'Em the Boot

Why don't more people like Italian liqueurs?

Makes you forget your date's name too.

Sambuca, Frangelico, Amaretto and the bartender's favorite, Tuaca, address our desire for sweet and comforting touches. Pouring black Sambuca into a half-cup of espresso "corrects," or eases, the harsher edges of the strong coffee. Swishing grappa through the dregs of an espresso shot opens up and alters both ingredients.

There are others worth a try, too, such as Cynar, a well-balanced liqueur distilled from artichokes and found at Arcodoro.

Closed Location

Or you can try an impromptu Italian suicide punch, as we did on our visit to Riccardi's. After sampling the full range of liqueurs available at the Quadrangle establishment, someone--and we believe it was the restaurateur--suggested mixing all the remains into one glass. Thirteen different flavors, from the nasty, physician-inspired Fernet Branca to pleasant and nutty Frangelico, swirled together into one ill-considered cocktail.

Wasn't bad, as far as we can remember--although we've forgotten much of what we could remember. But as Tobin explains, most people don't care what they pound down. Things like grappa, Averna and Sambuca were made to sip and linger. They are meant to prepare the appetite or conclude a meal in civility. At most bars, however, patrons "just want to get drunk."

That and avoid TABC terror.

« Previous Page
My Voice Nation Help
Sort: Newest | Oldest