Cappelletti Swizzle · Bar Mezzana

By Eric Twardzik · 07/14/2017

For evidence of Bar Mezzana’s aperitif aptitude, look no further than the Cappelletti Swizzle, a low-ABV refresher that’s stunningly easy to make and to drink.

Cappelletti, a lesser-known aperitif from Italy, serves as the drink’s backbone. It’s notable for both a low alcohol content (just 17 percent) and for a unique base made with red wine.

“The wine base really brings a lot of acidity to the table,” says Bar Mezzana’s beverage director Ryan Lotz. “It makes it a lot crisper, and the flavors are really clean. There’s an acidic twinge to it—almost like a white wine.”

Tart, tangy, and citrusy, the drink’s key flavors certainly come from Cappelletti—but it’s  balanced out with lime juice, simple syrup, and a bit of vermouth. A mint sprig garnish lends a fresh aroma.

To prepare the drink, Lotz advocates what’s known as a “rattle shake.” Shake the concoction with a single ice cube until “the shaker starts to feel a little colder than when you picked it up,” he explains.

Cappelletti Swizzle
1½ ounces Aperitivo Cappelletti
½ ounce dry vermouth
¾ ounce lime juice
¾ ounce simple syrup
Mint sprig, to garnish

Combine ingredients in shaker with a single large ice cube. Shake briefly, strain into a rocks glass, and fill with crushed ice. Garnish with fresh mint sprig.

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