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
- 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.
- Strain through moistened cheesecloth, squeeze out all the liquids.
- 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 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.