I have long been a big fan of Pizzaiolo over in Oakland. As I wrote about here, they were a big part of the reason that I got into cocktails back in the day. They serve amazing food and drink at both their original location and at their sister spot, Boot & Shoe Service.
Mrs. The Ace and I were at Pizzaiolo a few weeks back and we were both delighted with this little ditty from their current menu. The fresh bite of the lemon is offset nicely by the smoky essence of the tequila and the bittersweet quality of the aperol & carpano. And as usual the server was kind enough to jot down the proportions for me to dabble with at The Ace!
The Broken Saddle
Pizzaiolo Restaurant, Oakland, CA
1 oz. tequila blanco (or subsitute reposado if you like a little smokier flavor)
1/2 oz. aperol
1/2 oz. carpano d'antica
3/4 oz. fresh-squeezed lemon juice
tonic (use Jack Rudy tonic syrup + sparkling water if at all possible - see below)
Mix all ingredients except tonic in cocktail shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a tall collins glass over ice. Top off glass with the tonic water and serve.
Please, PLEASE try looking online or around your neighborhood to see if you can score a bottle of Jack Rudy tonic syrup for this (or any other) cocktail in the place of traditional tonic water. You just pre-mix a simple ratio of syrup to sparkling water in advance so that you have a mixture to top off your drink when complete. The Jack Rudy syrup combines the slightly bitter quality of quinine alongside a little bit of sugar and lemongrass and orange peel. This stuff blows away your Mom and Dad's Schweppes tonic, folks...
There you have it. A complex little cocktail. I recently served this drink at a party and it was a definite crowd-pleaser.
A special thanks to the folks at Pizzaiolo for their willingness to talk cocktail shop with their patrons. If you're in their neighborhood, stop by and check them out for yourself.