Craft spirits are, without a doubt, having a moment in the States. Wherever you go in the country, you’ll find independent distillers trying their own hands at the age-old craft. Most of these distillers start out with vodka, or gin, or white whiskey that they’ll then go on to age. But some distilleries get a lot more creative, forging their own path straight of the gate.
That’s the case with Tattersall Distilling out of Minneapolis, one of our favorite discoveries of late. In addition to their lineup of classic spirits, they’re also producing bottles that are simply one of a kind. We loved their Crème De Fleur for the light floral aroma that it imparts to cocktails. But we might be loving their Bitter Orange liqueur even more.
Orange liqueur: In the cocktail world, that means your Cointreaus and your Grand Marniers, slightly sweet citrus liqueurs that are essential in a Sidecar or a classic Margarita. Tattersall’s is something different. Far closer to an amaro, it’s a dead ringer for an orange-inflected Campari, right down to the lovely reddish hue, with an intriguing array of aromatics and a pleasant bitter backbone. Give it a try in these three simple cocktails.
Easy: Bourbon Americano
Lesser-known than the Negroni or the Aperol Spritz, the Americano is a great drink when you’re after something bitter and red, simply a combination of Campari, sweet vermouth, and soda. But we’re feeling a little cheeky, so we’re going to slide some bourbon right in there. Like a cross between a highball and a Boulevardier.
Instructions: In a tall glass with ice, stir together an ounce of bourbon, an ounce of Tattersall Bitter Orange, an ounce of sweet vermouth, and three ounces of club soda. Garnish with an orange half-moon and serve with a straw.
We can’t taste something this much like Campari and not immediately want to try it out in a Negroni. The orange elements of the liqueur come through beautifully, while maintaining the bracing, bitter profile of the original.
Instructions: In a mixing glass with ice, combine an ounce and a half of gin, an ounce of Tattersall Bitter Orange, and an ounce of sweet vermouth. Stir until very well-chilled, then strain into a rocks glass with fresh ice (or, ideally, one large ice cube). Garnish with a thick orange peel, twisted over the surface of the cocktail to spray its citrus oils over the drink.
Advanced: Orange Grove
Combining the Bitter Orange with lemon and a little sugar gives us a tart, juicy base for a cocktail that’s even better with a little vodka in there to stiffen things up. Bright and drinkable, it’s a total crowd-pleaser.
Instructions: In a cocktail shaker with ice, combine an ounce and a half of vodka, an ounce of Tattersall Bitter Orange, an ounce of fresh lemon juice, and half an ounce of simple syrup. Shake until very well-chilled, then strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a thin lemon peel, twisted over the surface of the cocktail to spray its citrus oils over the drink.
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