Want to add an Amalfi vibe to your alfresco summer soirée? Keen to recreate hazy evenings in Granada, drinking locally made vermouth?
Thanks to a bunch of creative West Country distillers, you don’t have to board a plane to pick up the artisanal tipples which add a rosy hue to holiday memories.
Wine and spirit specialists Drink Finder gave us the low-down on the South West spiritsmiths crafting contemporary versions of classic continental drinks …
Evenings on the Italian Riviera
There are few better ways to end a sunny garden supper than passing a chilled bottle of syrupy limoncello around the table. This Cornish take on the Italian classic uses the whole fruit instead of just the rind to add an extra citrus hit.
‘Sweet, sharp and sherbety notes make this limoncello a palate pleaser,’ says Jon Wigmore of Drink Finder. ‘If you want to shake things up, serve it after dinner as a Lemon Meringue cocktail with sugar syrup, fresh lemon juice, double cream and Cuarenta Y Tres.’
For a French cafe vibe
Tarquin’s was the first British distiller to take on the traditional French spirit and its Cornish pastis has since scooped two international awards. Distilled with 13 botanicals and in small batches, Tarquin’s version of the aniseed tipple comes in at a heady 42 per cent ABV.
‘Try mixing up a New Orleans,’ says Jon. ‘Combine the pastis with a good rye whisky (Sazerac is fantastic quality for money), anisette, orange bitters and bitters.’
Sunset aperitifs in Seville
A quality vermouth deserves more than just an honourable mention in an artisan Negroni recipe. Knightor Winery’s rosé number blends Cornwall-grown grapes with a delicate mix of herbs to create an aperitif worthy of a solo spot in the glass.
‘Providing ample citrus notes and a notable crispness, Knightor’s Rosé Vermouth is our favourite in the collection,’ says Jon. ‘I recommend serving it with ice and Navas Premium Cornish Tonic to allow the blend of 21 herbs and spices to dance on the palate.’