It's been about 70 years since F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald were the country's most famous tipplers, but we're still paying homage to their boozy influence. At Craigie on Main, bartender Carrie Cole is mixing a cocktail called the Zelda Fitzgerald. She was inspired by the Fitzgerald cocktail, but wanted to use rye in place of gin (the old boy's favorite spirit).
While gin is more herbaceous, "rye makes everything spicier, deeper, darker and richer," she says. "It's certainly much more of a wintertime cocktail. I like the Zelda for something that's in the genre of a Manhattan style, but splitting up that other proportion into something that's pretty interesting with Cynar, mirto and Aperol."
Those latter three liqueurs are on the sweeter side, but with enough bitterness to make things interesting. "Aperol has such a nice, sweet, kind of bitter quality," she says. "I love that about Cynar, too. It's intensely sweet, with a great astringent bitterness to it." The mirto brings a berry flavor to the mix, while the rye offers "a nice sort of strong masculine foundation for all those things to play."
1.5 oz Rittenhouse rye
.5 oz Aperol
.5 oz mirto
.5 oz Cynar
dash Regan's orange bitters
Stir all ingredients together over ice. Strain and serve down with a flamed lemon zest garnish.