The Anacoana (Spoke)

Alexis Jesup

In addition to the carefully curated pours of wine you’d expect to see on the menu at Spoke Wine Bar, you’ll also find cocktails—but none of them will knock you out, according to wine buyer Liz Mann.

“It’s more about whetting your appetite than getting really boozy,” Mann says. “You can have a cocktail or two and still have a glass of wine and enjoy dinner.”

That outlook is embodied in the light-yet-complex Anacoana. It’s composed of manzanilla sherry, tequila, oleo saccharum syrup, and a small amount of “quina quina,” or quinquina—a flamboyantly named aperitif fortified by quinine.

Despite its lower alcohol content, the nutty, creamy manzanilla plays the starring role. Tequila provides backbone and body while taking a back seat in flavor, a feat achieved thanks to Lunazul Blanco’s milder nature. The oleo saccharum syrup gives it a strong citrus quality.

A scant quarter teaspoon of quinquina is added to the glass before the rest of the drink, as a rinse. But unlike most rinses, it isn’t meant to be poured out (or drank) before the other ingredients are added: Instead, allow it to sit in the glass after rinsing.

This bright, refreshing drink comes with a side of history, too. The name pays tributes to Anacoana, a native princess who resisted the Spanish in 15th-century Hispaniola.

“We like to tip our hat to women who made an impact in history,” says Mann.

Anacoana
¼ ounce Kina l’Aero d’Or Vin Apéritif au Quinquina
1½ ounces manzanilla sherry
1 ounce Lunazul Blanco tequila
½ ounce oleo saccharum syrup*
1 dash Peychaud’s bitters
Lemon, for garnish

Rinse coupe glass with Kina (don’t pour out). Add sherry, tequila, oleo saccharum syrup, and Peychaud’s to a stirring glass with ice and stir until chilled. Strain into glass and garnish with lemon peel.

*Oleo saccharum syrup
½ cup sugar
½ cup hot water
Peel of 1 grapefruit
Peel of 1 orange

Add peels to plastic container and cover in sugar. Seal container and store in refrigerator. Let mixture sit at least one night (leave it longer for stronger flavor) before adding hot water and straining out peels. Seal container and return to refrigerator. Keeps up to a month.

Brian Samuels

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