Drinking Like Jersey Boys and Girls -- The Newark
I've never been to Newark (only through it), but I've repeatedly heard it is not one of New Jersey's highlights. That didn't stop Jim Meehan and John Deragon at PDT in New York City from creating a cocktail in its honor. The Newark is not far removed from a Manhattan or a Brooklyn. Tony Soprano would like the Newark because most or all of its ingredients come from New Jersey and Italy. Am I good with that? Fuggedaboudit.
2 ounces Laird's apple brandy or applejack
1 ounce sweet vermouth
.25 ounces Fernet Branca
.25 ounces Luxardo maraschino liqueur
Combine in a shaker with ice, stir with the resoluteness of being Jersey tough, and strain into a chilled glass (preferably a coupe).
Laird's, which originated in New Jersey, makes apple brandy and applejack. The two spirits aren't very different. When you compare apples to apples, it's about exploiting different boiling and freezing points. In modern times Laird's applejack is a mix of apple brandy and other spirits. Add the sweet vermouth (most of which comes from Italy) and the Fernet Branca and Luxardo maraschino liqueur (both of which come from Italy), and you have one great cocktail. Want some accompanying music from some real Jersey boys? I suggest Frank Sinatra (you might associate him with New York, but he was born and raised in New Jersey) or Bon Jovi.
As anyone who's seen the musical or movie Jersey Boys would tell you, big girls (and boys) don't cry. They drink Newarks.
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