Cocktail & Other Recipes By Spirit Cognac & Other Brandy Cocktails

Picon Punch

Image: Tim Nusog

This 19th-century sipper hails from Marseilles, France, by way of Bakersfield, Calif., where it was mixed regularly for the local Basque population. The main ingredient, a bitter French digestif called Amer Picon, is no longer commercially available in the U.S. But that didn’t stop the bar team at San Francisco’s 15 Romolo, whose recipe substitutes a trio of Italian amari to fill in the drink’s intense herbal character.

This recipe originally appeared as part of “Picon Punch Is the Winter Drink You Never Knew You Needed.”


  • 1 1/2 oz Amer Picon*
  • 1/4 oz Grenadine*
  • Soda water, to top
  • 1/2 oz Brandy
  • Garnish: Lemon peel


  1. Pour the Amer Picon and grenadine into a Georgian Irish Coffee glass over ice and stir briefly.

  2. Fill almost to top with the soda water.

  3. Float the brandy on top.

  4. Garnish with a lemon peel.

  5. *Amer Picon: Because it’s not available in the U.S., as a substitute, combine 2 parts Ramazzotti amaro, 2 parts dry curaçao and 1 part gentian liqueur in an airtight bottle and shake. Refrigerate until ready to use.