“This is my fruity drink,” says Ranella of this tequila-based refresher. “Fruit and spice were two things missing from the list and so instead of making two different drinks, I combined them in one.” To the combination of 7 Leguas tequila blanco, agave nectar, Hum liqueur, and egg white, he adds fresh passion fruit and lime juices and a couple slices of fresh jalapeño. Shaken vigorously then strained, the result is a frothy, fruit-forward cocktail with a serious bite. “My philosophy is, if I’m going to make a cocktail with spice, then I’m really going to go for it.”
“This drink is kind of deceptive, you don’t think it’s going to be approachable but then you take a sip and somehow the drink is gone in 30 seconds,” says Ranella. The drink, which falls in the Sour family, features Averna amaro, fresh lime juice, mint, agave nectar, and a touch of Rittenhouse rye.
In this cocktail, floral BarSol pisco and bracing Rittenhouse rye team up to play off the warm spices of Velvet Falernum and Averna. “The Falernum really works well with the pisco, and the Averna really works well with the rye. It’s like two separate flavor pairings that come together and work within one drink," says Ranella.
“It's basically a play on a Negroni,” says Ranella of this mezcal-based drink. To the Del Maguey mezcal he adds rich Carpano Antica sweet vermouth, spicy ginger syrup, and a touch of Campari. The glass is given a light absinthe mist (“it’s more for the nose, the aromatics hit you as you sip”) and orange oil is expressed over the top.
Here, the sweet-tart pairing of Early Times bourbon and lime juice creates a platform to highlight vibrant fresh mint and cooling cucumber. Ranella mists a little Pimm's over the top for aroma.
Angry Orchard hard cider and floral Hum liqueur star in what Ranella calls a “very approachable stirred mezcal cocktail.” Ranella explains that the smoke from the Del Maguey mezcal acts more as a backdrop. “What’s really working here is the cider and the liqueur," he notes.
Nowhere to Run
In this variation on the Old Fashioned, Diplomatico Añejo rum gets stirred with a combination of Angostura and orange bitters and a housemade kumquat-vanilla shrub. “I think it’s a little lighter than the traditional Old Fashioned. I wanted the wood on the Diplomatico to come through and really just let the bitters do their job,” explains Ranella.