Friday, April 5, 2019

Sanctuary (Revisit WIth Homemade Amer Picon)

The Sanctuary is one of the first cocktails I made for this blog when I thought I had a suitable substitute for Amer Picon--a very difficult to find French Amaro that bartenders now have to recreate in order to get the strength of flavor of the original recipe. All this fuss over the Amer Picon, one tends to overlook the Dubonnet Rouge, another seldom seen classic cocktail ingredient. In fact, at two ounces, the Sanctuary is really a Dubonnet Rouge cocktail more than an Amer Picon cocktail.

Dubonnet Rouge (Love the new label!) is an aperitif wine spirit that is fortified and flavored with a secret blend of herbs and spices. Unlike Lillet, it is not purely an orange flavored wine, though there is some citrus in Dubonnet Rouge. There are chocolate and roasted cabbage notes in the aperitif as well. So with that depth, this wine cocktail gets punched up with Cointreau, a 40-proof triple sec made with bitter and sweet oranges, and Amer Picon, a bitter orange liqueur. The result is a complex cocktail that keeps changing as you drink it. As it warms it takes on a chocolate orange character and continues to be extremely rich, despite having a lower ABV than most cocktails.
  • 2 oz. Dubonnet Rouge
  • 1 oz. Amer Picon (DIY Amer Picon used)
  • 1 oz. triple sec (Cointreau used)
  • lemon twist
Combine all ingredients except lemon twist in a mixing glass (The NY Bartender's guide says to shake, but I really think that makes the Dubonnet Rouge cloudy and it's unnecessary so I stirred) with ice. Stir and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with the lemon twist. 

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