Make it a Manhattan

Joe Campanale shakes up the “quintessential New York drink,” explaining how the spirits complement each other in the classic whiskey-based cocktail, and then demonstrates a variation he calls the Palermo.

Video Transcript

Hi, I'm Joe Campanale. You're watching Today, we're going to make the classic Manhattan cocktail and then a variation on the Manhattan that we like to serve at our restaurant, Dell'Anima. So, the Manhattan cocktail is the quintessential New York drink. I love to serve it to anyone who really like whiskey because it's a whiskey based cocktail that also has Italian vermouth and angostura bitters. So, first you fill up a mixing glass with ice. And then you want to take three ounces of your rye whiskey. And rye is great because it has a lot of spicy dry flavor as opposed to bourbon which is much riper and sweeter and rounder. It's also really wonderful because it's very inexpensive. You can get top ryes and they don't cost you a ton. I really like to use this Rittenhouse Rye, but there are a few other great ones out there. And then you'll also use Italian Vermouth. We love to use this Carpano Antica formula, which is the old original formula for vermouth. Now it you like the drink just a little bit drier, you can use also use dry vermouth. Or you can make the perfect Manhattan which is equal parts sweet and dry vermouth. Next you take your cocktail spoon or bar spoon, and you stir. I like to stir from ten to twenty seconds. But when you feel the glass getting nice and cold, you know you have a cold drink. And then you add your bitters. Just a few dashes of Angostura bitters, give it a quick stir and grab a cocktail or martini glass, and with your julep strainer just strain that into the glass. Now, the classic garnish for a Manhattan cocktail is a cherry. We really love to use these Amarena cherries which are imported black cherries from Italy. They don't have any of those artificial colors or artificial sweeteners that you see with the maraschino cherries. Goes right inside. Now for the variation. At my restaurant, Dell'Anima in New York City, we serve a drink called the Palermo. It's named after the capital of Sicily. We still use the rye whiskey and instead of the sweet red vermouth, we take an Italian digestif called Averna, that actually comes from Sicily. And it's a typical Italian after dinner drink. It's bitter and it's sweet. So, one ounce of Averna, so it's a little bit darker. And instead of the Angostura bitters, we use bitters that aren't quite as strong, but they're orange bitters. Now Sicily's known for having some of the greatest oranges in the world, especially around the Mount Etna area where they get great volcanic soil. Just a few drops of orange bitters, and stir. Again we're going to use our julep strainer and strain that into our cocktail glass. Then this time to even bring out more of those citrus flavors, we're going to use just an orange peel. Just take your peel like that and then I like to invert the peel and if you give it just a little squeeze, it releases all the essential oils and I just rub it along the rim and drop it right in. So, you have your classic Manhattan and then the Palermo and the last step is just make sure. You taste them to see if they're good and nice and balanced. Mm..that's great. It's very citrusy, a little strong a little spicy from the rye. It's terrific. Thanks so much for watching. I'm Joe Campanale. Tune into to see more.

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