Jacopo is back this week with a drink perfect for a leisurely ride in the open air through the his home region of Tuscany. We sat down with Jacopo to ask about the idea behind the drink, and how it got its witty name.
SI: Why did you choose the name Vespatini? Even though the ingredients aren’t Italian, the drink’s name suggests that it has an Italian twist.
Jacopo: If you look at the recipe you will notice some similarities to the classic Side Car cocktail… all I did was add Luxardo Maraschino – one of the best- if not the best Italian liqueurs to transform a Side Car into a VESPA!
SI: What is your favorite part about this cocktail?
Jacopo: I love the classics! And a Side Car is definitely something your Dad used to drink. The taste, the ingredients, and the style of the cocktail bring you to a different era. I love that!
SI: Do you have any memories associated with this cocktail?
Jacopo: Considering the fact that sometimes memory and cocktails do not go hand in hand, yes I do! This makes me remember how I fell in love with this profession. This is for sure one of the first drinks that I learned how to properly prepare from my dear friend and mentor Luca Picchi. Now head bartender at the prestigious and historic Caffe Rivoire in Florence. He is the reason why I do what I do now.
SI: Where is the ideal place to sip on this cocktail in Italy?
Jacopo: That I can tell you without a doubt. Caffe Rivoire in Piazza della Signoria, Florence – and make sure Luca prepares it for you!
If you aren’t making it to Florence in the next few months but would still like to sip on this cocktail, try following easy recipe to make it at home:
- 1 1/2 oz. Cognac or Armagna
- 1/2 oz. Cointreau
- 1/4 oz. Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur
- 3/4 oz. fresh lemon juice
- 2 splashes of apple bitters
- Garnish with apples slices
Pour all of your ingredients directly into an ice filled cocktail shaker and shake for 5 fast seconds… come on…shake it like you mean it! Serve immediately, and pour straight into your chilled martini glass and garnish with an apple slice. The color is like that of translucent honey, just like a summer tea. The citrus and maraschino are the first notes your nose will capture and the flavor is the perfect balance of Cognac and lemon dancing with the sweet maraschino and the tartness of the bitters… opposites attract and this cocktail captures that essence perfectly!
Tried your own take on the Vespatini? Share your spin below!