Whisky Cocktails: Paper Plane

For my US readers, happy (belated, by the time you read this) Fourth of July! I decided that rather than write a full-fledged blog post and thus take precious celebrating time away from barbecuing ribs and drinking the last of my cold beer, I would just phone it in and blame it on the holiday weekend.

Instead, I wanted to share with you the latest cocktail that has been single-handedly (do cocktails have hands in this analogy?) getting me through the lockdown lately. It was introduced to me by a very good friend, and it’s called the Paper Plane. It’s technically a whisky cocktail and like another of my staples, the Negroni, it’s easy to make because it’s easy to remember. A note on ingredients, though. While you can use any bourbon (or rye) that you like, the Amaro Nonino is kind of mandatory. I certainly didn’t have any in my home bar, so I had to mask up and brave the periapocalyptic landscape of the outside world to secure a bottle. Really, I mean it. It’s worth it for this cocktail. There are a lot of bitter elements in this one, so if you can’t stand a Negroni or a Boulevardier then don’t waste your time on this one. The Aperol is important too, although it’s easily replaced by my favorite apertivo from Leopold Brothers. Campari might be a little strong, but could work in a pinch… especially if you dial it back.

The ingredient ratio is obviously 1-1-1-1 so feel free to change the measurements if you want a larger or smaller (but why tho?) cocktail. You could strain this into a rocks glass with a large ice cube, like a Negroni, but I think it’s better served up.

Paper Plane cocktail

Paper Plane

  • 3/4 oz bourbon
  • 3/4 oz Aperol or Leopold Bros. Apertivo
  • 3/4 oz Amaro Nonino
  • 3/4 oz fresh-squeezed lemon juice, ideally strained

Shake ingredients in a cocktail shaker or if you’re lazy like me, then stir ingredients in a mixing glass with ice for at least 30 seconds (count!). Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. It’s so pretty it doesn’t really need a garnish.

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