Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Mirto di Sardegna


slkinsey
 Share

Recommended Posts

A while back in the thread on sloe gin we had a minor diversion on Mirto.

Mirto is a traditional infusion from the island of Sardegna, which is a large but remote and sparsely populated island off the Mediterranean coast of Italy. Sardegna is to Italy as Corsica is to France -- technically part of the country, but not really culturally a part of the country, and with special autonomy under the state constitution.

Mirto is the Italian word for "myrtle," and here are two different kinds of Mirto di Sardegna: Mirto Rosso, which is made from the berries (and perhaps some of the leaves) of the myrtle tree, and Mirto Bianco, which is made only from the leaves of the myrtle tree. Both are made by infusing the myrtle berries and/or leaves in alcohol. The rosso type is sweet. Not sure about the bianco type, as I have not had a chance to sample it.

Mirto Rosso is a very interesting spirit. Definitely some berry flavors and sweetness there. But also a certain resinous quality that brings to mind fresh, sticky rosemary. As chance would have it, I recently sampled a very nice cocktail including a hint of fresh rosemary prepared by one Mister Damon Dyer at Flatiron Lounge, so I had the idea that a little resin could be interesting.

So far I've been riffing on sloe gin drinks. The mirto versions are nothing like the sloe gin drinks, but many of the same principles apply. The best so far have been a Mirto Sour with 1 1/2 gin, 3/4 lemon, 3/4 simple, egg white and a 1/2 ounce mirto float, and a "Tango Sardo" with equal parts Mirto Rosso and Laird's bonded.

Argiolas has good distribution in NYC of their Tremontis Mirto, which is the one I've been using (a rosso). And Zedda Piras makes both a Mirto Rosso and a Mirto Bianco. Zedda Piras is part of Gruppo Campari, but I've never seen their products in the States.

If you have a chance, pick up a bottle and try it out. It's an interesting spirit that provides opportunities to create cocktails with a new and largely unfamiliar flavor.

Edited by slkinsey (log)

--

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I picked up a bottle of Bresca Dorada mirto rosso in Rome at Fiumicino airport this spring (having sampled a glass at a wine bar near Campo dei Fiori earlier in the week, L'Angolo divino). Very nice, though I hadn't considered using it in a cocktail.

As per Bresca Dorada's web site (vide supra), the mirto bianco product sounds like it's similarly sweet, and the ingredient list includes sugar and honey.

I also liked the resinous quality.

Can you pee in the ocean?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I picked up a bottle of Bresca Dorada mirto rosso in Rome at Fiumicino airport this spring (having sampled a glass at a wine bar near Campo dei Fiori earlier in the week, L'Angolo divino). Very nice, though I hadn't considered using it in a cocktail.

As per Bresca Dorada's web site (vide supra), the mirto bianco product sounds like it's similarly sweet, and the ingredient list includes sugar and honey.

I also liked the resinous quality.

quite a while ago i inherited six different bottlings of mirto. (i think all were rosso) i liked to pair it with lemoncello in various cocktails...

abstract expressionist beverage compounder

creator of acquired tastes

bostonapothecary.com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Since myrtle plants are available in summer at the farmer's markets, has anyone tried to make their own? Any guesses on the alcohol base -- grappa or grain spirits?

Cheers,

Yojimbo

"The thirst for water is a primitive one. Thirst for wine means culture, and thirst for a cocktail is its highest expression."

Pepe Carvalho, The Buenos Aires Quintet by Manuel Vazquez Montalban

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...