Jump to content


Welcome to the eG Forums!

These forums are a service of the Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, a 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to advancement of the culinary arts. Anyone can read the forums, however if you would like to participate in active discussions please join the Society.

Photo

Amer Picon & Torani Amer


  • Please log in to reply
150 replies to this topic

#121 KD1191

KD1191
  • participating member
  • 954 posts
  • Location:New York

Posted 29 October 2011 - 04:16 PM

Never been a fan of the Amer Boudreau, but I suspect the larger issue is that the Brooklyn (at least for me) is a Noilly Prat or nothin' drink...
True rye and true bourbon wake delight like any great wine...dignify man as possessing a palate that responds to them and ennoble his soul as shimmering with the response.

DeVoto, The Hour

#122 tanstaafl2

tanstaafl2
  • participating member
  • 738 posts
  • Location:Atlanta, GA

Posted 30 October 2011 - 06:58 AM

Are you also selling them at A y A?


And more important for those of us out in the sticks but who might venture to the big city on occasion, who or what exactly is A y A?

Not much luck with google.
If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man. ~Mark Twain

Some people are like a Slinky. They are not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you shove them down the stairs...
~tanstaafl2

#123 KD1191

KD1191
  • participating member
  • 954 posts
  • Location:New York

Posted 30 October 2011 - 08:19 AM


Are you also selling them at A y A?


And more important for those of us out in the sticks but who might venture to the big city on occasion, who or what exactly is A y A?

Not much luck with google.


Amor Y Amargo.
True rye and true bourbon wake delight like any great wine...dignify man as possessing a palate that responds to them and ennoble his soul as shimmering with the response.

DeVoto, The Hour

#124 tanstaafl2

tanstaafl2
  • participating member
  • 738 posts
  • Location:Atlanta, GA

Posted 30 October 2011 - 10:18 AM

Amor Y Amargo.


Ah, thanks! Should have made the connection. I think I have been to this website before I think as a result of the recent Bitterman's spirits discussion.
If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man. ~Mark Twain

Some people are like a Slinky. They are not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you shove them down the stairs...
~tanstaafl2

#125 Mike S.

Mike S.
  • participating member
  • 114 posts
  • Location:Santa Clara, CA

Posted 02 February 2012 - 12:53 PM



Anybody ever work out a recipe for turning these three ingredients into an Amer Picon substitute? Any thoughts on using a standard issue vodka or overproof rum in place of the Everclear?

My proportions are 15 ml Everclear and 1 ml Angostura orange bitters for every 100 ml Amaro Ciociaro. Very, very close, and easy.


Thanks for this. I gave it a try last night and very much like the results. One additional question for you Dave or anyone else who can chime in on this: Are you using the 151 Everclear or the 190? 190 is very difficult if not impossible to get in CA.
Cheers,

Mike

"The problem with the world is that everyone is a few drinks behind."
- Bogart

#126 FrogPrincesse

FrogPrincesse
  • society donor
  • 3,087 posts
  • Location:San Diego, CA

Posted 06 March 2012 - 09:28 PM

Regarding Amer Picon drinks, the Brooklyn is a favorite and in my regular rotation.

Last week I tried a cocktail which is similar to the Brooklyn but with sweet vermouth instead of the dry, no maraschino liqueur, and different ratios, from Ted Haigh's Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails: The Liberal

Posted Image

I did not have the 100-proof Wild Turkey which is specified in the book and used Woodford bourbon instead. It was really good drink, definitely in the same league as the Brooklyn.

#127 FrogPrincesse

FrogPrincesse
  • society donor
  • 3,087 posts
  • Location:San Diego, CA

Posted 08 March 2012 - 08:46 PM

The Brooklyn from Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails by Ted Haigh. Still one of my favorite drinks.

Posted Image

#128 FrogPrincesse

FrogPrincesse
  • society donor
  • 3,087 posts
  • Location:San Diego, CA

Posted 12 March 2012 - 06:59 PM

A very nice Brooklyn variation: The Bushwick with rye, sweet vermouth, amer picon, and maraschino liqueur, a Phil Ward creation.

Posted Image

#129 FrogPrincesse

FrogPrincesse
  • society donor
  • 3,087 posts
  • Location:San Diego, CA

Posted 21 March 2012 - 07:42 PM

The Hoskins Cocktail: 2 oz gin, 3/4 amer picon, 1/2 maraschino, 1/4 cointreau, dash orange bitters, flamed orange peel.

Posted Image

A very interesting cocktail with the picon, maraschino and cointreau creating layers of flavors.
It's a little on the sweet side but very good overall, and a great use of Picon.

#130 tanstaafl2

tanstaafl2
  • participating member
  • 738 posts
  • Location:Atlanta, GA

Posted 22 March 2012 - 06:52 AM

The Hoskins Cocktail: 2 oz gin, 3/4 amer picon, 1/2 maraschino, 1/4 cointreau, dash orange bitters, flamed orange peel.

Posted Image

A very interesting cocktail with the picon, maraschino and cointreau creating layers of flavors.
It's a little on the sweet side but very good overall, and a great use of Picon.


Have you ever tried one of the Amer Picon substitutes (such as post #108 from earlier in this post) side by side in the same drink made with your Picon Biere to see what, if any, difference it made? I would think that might be an interesting experiment. At a much higher ABV and with a bit more spice I would think it would have an impact. Just don't know how much. But I haven't got the Picon Biere to experiment with.
If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man. ~Mark Twain

Some people are like a Slinky. They are not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you shove them down the stairs...
~tanstaafl2

#131 FrogPrincesse

FrogPrincesse
  • society donor
  • 3,087 posts
  • Location:San Diego, CA

Posted 22 March 2012 - 09:48 AM

Have you ever tried one of the Amer Picon substitutes (such as post #108 from earlier in this post) side by side in the same drink made with your Picon Biere to see what, if any, difference it made? I would think that might be an interesting experiment. At a much higher ABV and with a bit more spice I would think it would have an impact. Just don't know how much. But I haven't got the Picon Biere to experiment with.


No, for some reason it took me a while to understand the full potential of the Amer Picon. Now that found a few drinks incorporating it that I really like, this type of side-by-side comparison sounds like a fun project, as long as the substitutes in question are reasonably easy to track down.

The substitute from post #108 suggested by David Wondrich was 15 ml Everclear and 1 ml Angostura orange bitters for every 100 ml Amaro Ciociaro. It sounds simple enough, however the Amaro Ciociaro is not something I remember seeing locally.

I am intrigued by Bittermens Amère Nouvelle and almost picked up a bottle when I was at Hi-Time a few weeks ago. Does anybody have it and what do you think of it?

#132 EvergreenDan

EvergreenDan
  • participating member
  • 1,006 posts
  • Location:Boston

Posted 22 March 2012 - 11:24 AM

I like Amère Nouvelle quite a lot. It is nice enough that you could drink it with just some lemon. It lacks the caramel color of Picon, if that matters (which it does not to me). I paid $28/375ml (although I see it is now $26 at the same store), which I think it a bit high. I wish they would re-think their pricing strategy as I now reserve it for special drinks at that price.

My batch of Amer Nouvelle came out very strong. I don't think the orange needs to be infused for nearly so long. I used 50/50 mix of sweet and bitter orange. I like it, but I need to cut the quantity by quite a bit.

I like CioCiaro, but my bottle was hard to come by. It is not distributed in MA. I ordered it mailorder from DrinkUpNY and had it shipped to me while I was traveling. Ironically, it was affordable.

I do have a small sample of real Picon Bierre. I need to do a 4-way taste test some time.
Kindred Cocktails | Craft + Collect + Concoct + Categorize + Community

#133 BittermensAG

BittermensAG
  • participating member
  • 67 posts
  • Location:Brooklyn, NY

Posted 22 March 2012 - 11:52 AM

I like Amère Nouvelle quite a lot. It is nice enough that you could drink it with just some lemon. It lacks the caramel color of Picon, if that matters (which it does not to me). I paid $28/375ml (although I see it is now $26 at the same store), which I think it a bit high. I wish they would re-think their pricing strategy as I now reserve it for special drinks at that price.


Regarding our "pricing strategy" - what we charge is just representative of what it costs us to both make the product and launch the brand. One of the things that people don't always know about when it comes to spirits is that every state where we ship requires us to register the brand and the labels at our cost. Many of these states also require bonds and monthly excise tax payments. Just to give you a round idea, we've put in over $15,000 just into registration fees (which we'll never see again).

We're a self-funded company. There are no partners with deep pockets - which means we produce a batch and count on getting payment in from our distributors so we can pay off the bottles (which is an extremely high cost component) so we can put in another batch.

When we've grown to the point that we're producing 10x the amount of what we produce now and we've paid off all of our starting expenses, it's possible that the price will start to go down. We certainly don't want price to be a barrier for folks to purchase our spirits, but at the same time, we have to make sure that we're pricing it in a manner that we can stay in business.
  • Craig E likes this
Avery Glasser
Bittermens, Inc. - Producers of Bittermens Bitters & Extracts

Bittermens Spirits, Inc. - Purveyors of Small Batch Bitter Liqueurs
Vendetta Spirits, LLC. - Nano-Importer of Hand-Produced Spirits

#134 Mike S.

Mike S.
  • participating member
  • 114 posts
  • Location:Santa Clara, CA

Posted 11 April 2012 - 06:08 PM




Anybody ever work out a recipe for turning these three ingredients into an Amer Picon substitute? Any thoughts on using a standard issue vodka or overproof rum in place of the Everclear?

My proportions are 15 ml Everclear and 1 ml Angostura orange bitters for every 100 ml Amaro Ciociaro. Very, very close, and easy.


Thanks for this. I gave it a try last night and very much like the results. One additional question for you Dave or anyone else who can chime in on this: Are you using the 151 Everclear or the 190? 190 is very difficult if not impossible to get in CA.


Back to this, because I finally worked up the courage to open one of my bottles of vintage Picon (see pic below) the other night and taste it side-by-side with the CioCiaro/Everclear/Angostura Orange mix. The two were not particularly close in my opinion, and my wife agreed. It's possible that my bottle of Picon was/is compromised in some way (though the seal was perfect and the level was well into the neck of the bottle) and/or our palates are different than others, but the main issue we found is that the vintage Picon was much, MUCH drier than the CioCiaro mix. Dry enough to surprise us both, actually, and to highlight just how sweet many of the "traditional" Italian Amaros really are.

I'm really not sure how to fix this discrepancy, since I don't know of any way to make an existing base liquid less sweet other than to dilute it out more with unsweetened additions, but of course that impacts the flavor concentration significantly. I think I might try the mix again, but using half-and-half Torani Amer and CioCiaro rather than all CioCiaro. Any other ideas?

Picon.JPG
Cheers,

Mike

"The problem with the world is that everyone is a few drinks behind."
- Bogart

#135 bostonapothecary

bostonapothecary
  • participating member
  • 1,270 posts
  • Location:have shaker will travel

Posted 12 April 2012 - 09:07 AM

mike, you should find a hydrometer and try and measure the specific gravity. with the alcohol content known, we could then extrapolate the sugar content and compare it to other bottlings.
abstract expressionist beverage compounder
creator of acquired tastes
bostonapothecary.com

#136 FrogPrincesse

FrogPrincesse
  • society donor
  • 3,087 posts
  • Location:San Diego, CA

Posted 24 October 2012 - 11:29 AM

Last night I had a Newman cocktail with gin, dry vermouth and Picon, another find from Bartender's Choice app. A very nice way to enjoy Picon.

Posted Image

#137 FrogPrincesse

FrogPrincesse
  • society donor
  • 3,087 posts
  • Location:San Diego, CA

Posted 20 November 2012 - 12:43 PM

For a Picon + champagne + gin combo see the Donizetti in the Cocktails with Champagne thread here (on the right in the photo).

Posted Image

#138 FrogPrincesse

FrogPrincesse
  • society donor
  • 3,087 posts
  • Location:San Diego, CA

Posted 20 November 2012 - 12:54 PM

It looks like there are a lot of cocktails in the Brooklyn family. I have not experienced a bad one yet but they can be hard to distinguish.

The Blue Collar Cocktail was created by Michael Madrusan when he mixed the recipes for the Liberal (rye, Picon, sweet vermouth, orange bitters) and the Brooklyn (bourbon, Picon, dry vermouth, maraschino liqueur). The resulting cocktail has rye, Picon, sweet vermouth, maraschino liqueur, angostura and orange bitters. Note that the Bartender's Choice app where I found the recipe specifies Amaro CioCiaro whereas I used picon bière. Using sweet vermouth in this drink makes it a little rounder compared to the Brooklyn - but I am writing this from memory as I haven't done a side-by-side - and tempers the rye to some extent. The differences are subtle though.

Posted Image

Edited to add that the ingredient list is the same as the Bushwick discussed upthread, with the addition of bitters (angostura + orange), I will have to compare the ratios as I haven't memorized all these recipes yet! As far as I remember the Bushwick was heavier on the sweet vermouth.

Edited by FrogPrincesse, 20 November 2012 - 01:02 PM.


#139 FrogPrincesse

FrogPrincesse
  • society donor
  • 3,087 posts
  • Location:San Diego, CA

Posted 20 November 2012 - 03:10 PM

The Mother-in-Law cocktail is another close relative of the Brooklyn. In the ingredient list, the dry vermouth is replaced with curaçao together with Angostura, Peychaud's and orange bitters. Therefore it is also similar to the Hoskins but with bourbon as the base instead of gin. We really need a spreadsheet to keep track of all of these. :smile:

I used the recipe from the Bartender's Choice app, so no simple syrup and slightly increased amounts of Picon, curaçao and maraschino compared to the version in Ted Haigh's Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails.

It began smoothly and then felt quite boozy with a lot of spice in the finish. In a blind tasting I would probably have guessed it was rye-based. Again, quite similar to the Brooklyn with some additional spice layers contributed by the curaçao (I used Paul Ferrand dry curaçao) and the four different kinds of bitters that I used.
A very nice sipping drink.

Posted Image

#140 earlofego

earlofego
  • participating member
  • 7 posts

Posted 08 February 2013 - 03:10 PM

I think I might try the mix again, but using half-and-half Torani Amer and CioCiaro rather than all CioCiaro. Any other ideas?


First post here, but I'm the proud owner of Picon Biere, Torani Amer and Amaro CioCiaro, the latter two newly acquired, and all of which I've been experimenting with this evening.

I've never had the chance to try old-recipe Amer Picon, but I'd be impressed if it was any more pleasant than a 50/50 mix of CioCiaro and Torani Amer. That makes a great aperitif and I'd argue it's better than either drink on its own. I suspect from reading the thread that the original Amer would be somewhat drier though.

I can also recommend the Brunswick cocktail, as found on the "cocktail virgin/slut" website and taken from "Pioneers of Mixing at Elite Bars : 1903-1933" -

http://cocktailvirgi.../brunswick.html

The Brunswick

1.5 oz Cognac
0.75 oz Dry Vermouth
0.25 oz Amer Picon
0.25 oz Benedictine

Stir and strain into a cocktail glass. Website version adds a lemon twist, probably an improvement.

The Ciociaro/Torani mix is the best substitute for Amer Picon here IMO. It adds a body and warmth to the drink. Picon Biere is a close second. Torani Amer is the worst option in my book - the drink doesn't benefit from the greater dryness and bitterness.

For any Amer Picon cocktail my approach will be to use 50/50 Ciociaro and Torani, and just change the ratio according to whether it seems too sweet or too bitter.

#141 FrogPrincesse

FrogPrincesse
  • society donor
  • 3,087 posts
  • Location:San Diego, CA

Posted 08 February 2013 - 03:25 PM

Very nice report earlofego, and welcome to eGullet!

Did you also try Ciociaro on its own in the Brunswick cocktail, or did you feel that it needed the 50/50 mix with Torani to work?

#142 earlofego

earlofego
  • participating member
  • 7 posts

Posted 08 February 2013 - 03:37 PM

Very nice report earlofego, and welcome to eGullet!

Did you also try Ciociaro on its own in the Brunswick cocktail, or did you feel that it needed the 50/50 mix with Torani to work?


Thanks FrogPrincesse! It's nice to be here.

CioCiaro as a substitute still makes a very drinkable cocktail. I'd personally have it below the Picon Biere and CioCiaro/Torani versions but if you add a dash of orange bitters, I think you've got a comparable drink. It pushes it just a little bit too far to the sweet side of the dial for my personal preference but I wouldn't put anyone off from trying it.

#143 tanstaafl2

tanstaafl2
  • participating member
  • 738 posts
  • Location:Atlanta, GA

Posted 09 February 2013 - 05:53 AM

Would a bit of Everclear help the CioCiaro/Torani 50/50 mix to make it a bit drier and to push the proof closer to the original Amer Picon (which was 78 proof).?
If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man. ~Mark Twain

Some people are like a Slinky. They are not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you shove them down the stairs...
~tanstaafl2

#144 earlofego

earlofego
  • participating member
  • 7 posts

Posted 09 February 2013 - 10:33 AM

Would a bit of Everclear help the CioCiaro/Torani 50/50 mix to make it a bit drier and to push the proof closer to the original Amer Picon (which was 78 proof).?


Possibly - although the CioCiaro / Torani mix is already 70 proof - by my calculations you'd only need the final mix to contain 5% Everclear to make it up to 78. Never having used Everclear (it's not available here in the UK), I wonder if that would have a worthwhile enough effect? I suppose you don't need much of anything at 190 proof ...

#145 tanstaafl2

tanstaafl2
  • participating member
  • 738 posts
  • Location:Atlanta, GA

Posted 10 February 2013 - 01:43 PM


Would a bit of Everclear help the CioCiaro/Torani 50/50 mix to make it a bit drier and to push the proof closer to the original Amer Picon (which was 78 proof).?


Possibly - although the CioCiaro / Torani mix is already 70 proof - by my calculations you'd only need the final mix to contain 5% Everclear to make it up to 78. Never having used Everclear (it's not available here in the UK), I wonder if that would have a worthwhile enough effect? I suppose you don't need much of anything at 190 proof ...


Might be worth a try. Perhaps there is an equivalent grain alcohol in the UK. Or a high proof vodka like Balkan at 88% ABV. About the same thing I would think.
If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man. ~Mark Twain

Some people are like a Slinky. They are not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you shove them down the stairs...
~tanstaafl2

#146 EvergreenDan

EvergreenDan
  • participating member
  • 1,006 posts
  • Location:Boston

Posted 12 February 2013 - 05:48 AM

That sounds fabulous. Re proof: when I made my Amer Boudreau, I used 100 proof vodka to dilute it at the end, rather than water, to bring the proof up to 78. I followed Jamie's instructions for a lengthy infusion -- which Fredric at Cocktail Virgin Slut recommends against -- and found the result fabulously bitter. It seems like it would work well in this, perhaps at a reduce dose so as to now overpower the Benedictine.
Kindred Cocktails | Craft + Collect + Concoct + Categorize + Community

#147 FrogPrincesse

FrogPrincesse
  • society donor
  • 3,087 posts
  • Location:San Diego, CA

Posted 08 October 2014 - 12:18 PM

Something bitter this way comes (Chuck Taggart) with Bulleit rye, Picon, Dolin sweet vermouth, Fernet-Branca, mole bitters, salt.

 

This is really fun, especially the first taste. It starts quite sweet, seductively aromatic and orange-forward. But of course, between the name and the ingredients, you know something else is coming and you brace yourself for what will inevitably happen next. So the long and bitter finish is not really a surprise, but it still grabs your attention, putting you back in your place in case you were starting to feel a little too comfortable. After a few sips, when the surprise effect starts to fade, it's still a pleasant taste and the bitterness subsides.  

 

15278051667_4944bb61b7_z.jpg

 

For something more tame, I also made a Brooklyn (another rye + Picon combo), this one with no surprises.

 

15464635695_ea657e5d6c_z.jpg

 


Edited by FrogPrincesse, 08 October 2014 - 12:18 PM.


#148 EvergreenDan

EvergreenDan
  • participating member
  • 1,006 posts
  • Location:Boston

Posted 09 October 2014 - 03:09 PM

OK, my froggy friend, you need to get a bottle of Sibilia or dell'erborista. Pronto. They way you describe your cocktails, I'm quite sure you'd love it.


Kindred Cocktails | Craft + Collect + Concoct + Categorize + Community

#149 FrogPrincesse

FrogPrincesse
  • society donor
  • 3,087 posts
  • Location:San Diego, CA

Posted 09 October 2014 - 04:02 PM

Ok, I am emailing you my home address right now so you can send me one. :wink:

 

While waiting for it to arrive, this will give me a great excuse to go back to Pizzeria Mozza - they have a great amari selection including that one. Who knows, I might get crazy and go for the amari flight.


  • Rafa likes this

#150 EvergreenDan

EvergreenDan
  • participating member
  • 1,006 posts
  • Location:Boston

Posted 09 October 2014 - 04:37 PM

amari selection


Calisaya is on their list and I've never heard of it. If you go, remember that dell'Erborista is about 3-4x more expensive to buy than the others. Just sayin'.
Kindred Cocktails | Craft + Collect + Concoct + Categorize + Community