Issue No. 136 —

Aperol Falernum

aperol falernum

A while back I saw an article in “Art Culinaire Magazine” with a few Aperol cocktails and an Aperol falernum recipe. The recipe came from Jane Lopez, Beverage Director at The Catbird Seat, in Nashville, Tennessee. I thought this was a great idea and decided to make my own twist.

I used my go to falernum recipe as a starting point, but omitted the fresh juice to help prolong the liqueur’s shelf life. I also cut back on the cloves because my original recipe’s clove flavor was too dominant for this variation. I played around with adding grapefruit zest. The flavors worked well together, but I thought the grapefruit zest downplayed the Aperol just a touch. I decided to cut it from my final recipe, but if you want to use grapefruit zest, go ahead and add it but limit the amount to less then a whole grapefruit so the Aperol can shine.

Making falernum is a fascinating process, a lot like making bitters. I can’t wait to experiment with more unique flavor profiles like a fig liqueur.



  • 5 oz Wray & Nephew Overproof White Rum
  • 5 oz Aperol Aperitivo
  • Zest of 6 limes with no white pith
  • Zest of 2 oranges with no white pith
  • 20 whole cloves, toasted
  • 1 ½ oz (by weight) peeled and chopped fresh ginger
  • 2 tablespoons blanched, slivered almonds (dry toasted until golden brown)
  • 14 oz simple syrup (I use 1:1)
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract


  1. Combine the rum, Aperol, lime zest, orange zest, cloves, almonds and ginger in a sealed mason jar, letting mixture soak for 24 hours. For the zest, I use a microplane zester.
  2. Strain through moistened cheesecloth, squeeze out all the liquids.
  3. Add the almond extract, and sugar syrup. Bottle in a sterilized container and shake to incorporate. I am not sure how long this should keep.

Have fun making cocktails with this amazing stuff! Here’s a simple recipe called the Corn N’ Oil that tastes great with this Aperol falernum used in place of the traditional.

corn and oil

Corn n’ Oil

  • 2 1/2 oz El Dorado 12 year
  • 1/2 oz of Aperol falernum
  • 4 dashes of Angostura Bitters
  • 2 lime wedges

This cocktail recipe is so simple you can build it directly in a double old fashioned rocks glass. Add your rum, falernum, bitters, and then squeeze one lime wedge into the rocks glass. Add ice and stir. Garnish with the other lime wedge.

Posted in DIY

5 Notes on Aperol Falernum

  1. Thanks for the excellent falernum recipes. I made the Aperol version and it is fantastic. The combination with El Dorado 12 makes for a very stiff drink that reminds me of a Negroni. Love it!

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