What the Heck is Cynar?
Cynar (pronounced chee-NAHR) is one of those wonderful Italian amaro* liqueurs—those apéritifs and digestifs like Campari, Aperol, Averna, Fernet-Branca, and a host of others I have yet to try. Unlike the ones just mentioned that have been around forever (Fernet-Branca since 1845, Campari 1860, Averna 1868, Aperol 1919), Cynar is the new kid on the amari block. Created in the 1950s, from a secret recipe of 13 herbs and plants (the predominant ingredient being artichoke leaves—Cynara scolymus), it reminds me of Campari in flavor, although more bitter, yet with a subtler, more rounded finish. Its color is similar to Averna and Fernet, although not as dark—a lustrous brown with a hint of red, almost like cognac. This is the first drink I invented using this unusual, fragrant, disarmingly flavorful liqueur. I call it “Veloce”, after my car. Enjoy! *In Italian, amaro means bitter.
VELOCE 1 part Cynar 1 part Broker’s Gin 1 part Sanpellegrino Limonata dash of Hella Bitters citrus bitters 6 to 8 grains of sea salt Stir everything except the sea salt over ice in a glass shaker. Pour into rocks glass. Garnish with a half wedge of ruby red grapefruit, then sprinkle the sea salt on top.
Sophia, my 1982 Alfa Romeo Spider Veloce... Molto bene!
LOTS of Amaro Liqueurs!