When developing this non-alcoholic cocktail, Focus on Health co-founder and senior manager of operations Alex Jump didn’t have to look too far afield.
“I was looking to make something that drank like a Martini or a Negroni, something that was more of a slow sipper, because that’s typically what I prefer to drink,” says Jump. She came up with what she calls a “slightly herbal White Negroni variation.”
Jump splits the base of the drink between two non-alcoholic spirits. “I’m obsessed with Martini & Rossi N/A products,” she says. The brand’s Floreale Aperitivo is made with a base of dealcoholized wine, which is infused with botanicals including artemisia and Roman chamomile. “It’s like Suze meets St-Germain meets blanc vermouth,” she says. “It’s really unique.” Jump also employs a half-ounce of Seedlip’s Garden expression. While the brand doesn’t market itself as a gin analog, botanical ingredients including rosemary, thyme, and spearmint might bring the spirit to mind.
The drink’s namesake is a tea syrup made with August Uncommon’s Far Afield blend, an herbal tea made with ginger, tangerine, and sage. It lends “a little spice and roundness to the drink,” says Jump. Blanc verjus, a tart juice pressed from unripe grapes, adds acidity and sharpness.
1 1/2 ounces Martini & Rossi Floreale Aperitivo
1/2 ounce Seedlip Garden
3/4 ounce blanc verjus
1/2 ounce August Uncommon Far Afield Tea Syrup (recipe below)
Garnish: lemon twist
Add the Floreale Aperitivo, Seedlip Garden, blanc verjus, and tea syrup to a mixing glass filled with ice and stir until well-chilled.
Strain into a Nick & Nora glass.
Garnish with a lemon twist.
For Tea Syrup: Combine one part brewed August Uncommon Far Afield Tea and two parts granulated sugar, and stir until fully combined. Store, refrigerated, for up to one month.
What Is a White Negroni?
The White Negroni was invented in 2001 by British bartender Wayne Collins at VinExpo, an industry trade show in Bordeaux, France. The bittersweet and floral combination includes gin, the gentian aperitif Suze, and aromatized wine Lillet blanc.
What Is Blanc Verjus?
Verjus is the pressed juice of unripened grapes that are harvested early in the winemaking season. The result is tart and often compared to a less-acidic vinegar. Unlike wine (or vinegar), verjus is not fermented, and it doesn’t contain any alcohol. Thanks to its high acidity, it’s often used to replace citrus juices in cocktails. Blanc verjus is made from white grapes, while red verjus is made from red grapes or a blend of red and white grapes.
Where Can I Buy the Ingredients?
Martini & Rossi Floreale Aperitivo can be found at wine shops in select markets, and will be available nationwide in early 2023. Seedlip Garden can be purchased directly from the retailer, on Amazon, at non-alcoholic bottle shops like Boisson, and at many standard liquor stores. Blanc verjus can be found at many wine shops and is also sold on Amazon. You can purchase Far Afield tea directly from the retailer, or swap in another herbal tea with notes of ginger and citrus.