For all but a few days each year, winter does not exist in Miami, Florida. For this reason, bartender Valentino Longo, of Le Sirenuse, created this spicy aperitivo to evoke the season’s traditional flavors. “It’s light in alcohol, refreshing. Coffee plays an important role in incorporating all those botanicals and spices together,” he says. With L’Aperitivo Nonino as its base spirit, the Winter in Miami is an interlude of tropical (lent from banana) and cozy (all those baking spices), underlined by Nonino’s gentian and chamomile notes to keep the whole thing in balance.
- 1 1/2 ounces L’Aperitivo Nonino Botanical Drink
- 3/4 ounce cold-brew coffee (not concentrate, or concentrate that’s been diluted)
- ¼ ounce spiced banana syrup (see Editor’s Note)
- 1 ounce soda
- 1 ounce tonic
Garnish: banana salt (see Editor’s Note)
- Add all ingredients except the soda and tonic to a mixing glass over ice and stir until chilled.
- Strain over ice into a highball glass prepared with a rim of banana salt, and top with soda and tonic.
Spiced Banana Syrup
2 ripe bananas
1 stick cinnamon
1 whole nutmeg seed
10 dried juniper berries
2 ½ cups sugar
1 cup water
Scant ½ teaspoon citric acid
Cut bananas into 1-inch slices. Add all ingredients except citric acid to a saucepot, and simmer for 20 minutes. Take off heat, and add citric acid. Once cooled, strain syrup into a container and store in the refrigerator. Reserve banana slices.
Put the bananas left over from the syrup in a dehydrator overnight. When cooled, sprinkle with salt and process in a spice grinder until finely ground and uniform in texture.