fernet_thumb.jpgFernet, that most bitter of Italian amari, has reached cult-like status in recent years. It’s a favorite shot for bartenders, a popular digestivo in San Francisco – Northern California accounts for nearly 40% of all Fernet Branca’s U.S. sales – and is often mixed with Coke in Argentina. But as Camper English notes, until now, a call for Fernet has almost exclusively meant Fernet Branca, the most widely available brand of the Italian liqueur.

Hoping to change that, two companies will begin giving consumers more choices in their Fernet consumption. Camper’s San Francisco Chronicle article reports that drinkers can expect to find Angelico Fernet early next year and Fernet Leopold, from Leopold Bros. of Denver, as early as this week. The latter uses bitter aloe as its main bittering agent, adding to the mix ginger, sarsaparilla, saffron, cardamom and spearmint.

Read the full article, here.

And while you do, try mixing up the Hanky Panky cocktail, straight out of the Savoy Cocktail Book.

Hanky Panky

1.5 oz Tanqueray Gin
1.5 oz Italian Vermouth
2 dashes Fernet

Stir all ingredients with ice, then strain into a cocktail glass. Squeeze orange peel on top, and drop it in.

Or The Revenge, a Fernet-forward cocktail created by a couple of Dallas-based barkeeps.

The Revenge

1 oz Fernet
1 oz Campari
1 oz Italian Vermouth

Stir all ingredients, including mint sprig, with ice. Strain into an old fashioned glass over one large ice cube, and garnish with a sprig of mint.

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