A new year can hardly pass without another radiant offering from Lance Winters and Alameda-based St. George Spirits. Bruto Americano is an American aperitivo, bittered largely with gentian root, while California-grown Seville oranges and buckthorn bark provide orange and woodsy notes. The flavor may recall Campari (with a hint of Aperol citrus)—as does the color, a lush vermillion derived from cochineal, as Campari used to be—but the soothing texture and complexity puts it in a category of its own. BA’s gorgeous Italian futurist label shines brilliantly with a sense of novelty, as well as optimism that even crowded, old categories can be refreshed.
St. George Spirits, Alameda, CA
Jordan Mackay’s writing on wine, spirits and food has appeared in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Decanter, the Art of Eating and many other publications. While Secrets of the Sommeliers, the book he wrote with Rajat Parr, won a James Beard Award in 2011, it’s certain winemakers that he credits with some of his most important tasting lessons.
This story appears in the print issue of Winter 2016.
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